Flu blamed for 1 child's death, suspected in another


Nationally, that rate has climbed well above 7 percent, a rate that experts at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said was last seen during the H1N1 swine flu epidemic of 2009. That makes this year's count particularly high, especially since the flu season - which runs from about October to May - won't officially end for another four months.

Schuchat also revealed that one in every 10 people who died in the US last week had suffered flu-like symptoms. It's the first finding in New York State this flu season, and first finding in New York State since the 2012-2013 flu season.

"This is a hard flu season and we can't predict how long it will last", CDC acting director Anne Schuchat said at a briefing for reporters.

There were 40,414 deaths in the U.S. during the third week of 2018, the most recent data available, and 4064 were from pneumonia or influenza, according to the CDC data.

And while deaths among children - now at 63 kids - and adults have not been extremely high, it is possible they could increase in line with hospitalization rates, she said.

CDC data show 48 of the 50 states reporting high influenza-like illness.

But the dominant strain this year is H3N2, and some virologists are saying it's the worst flu season in years, and it's backed by data.

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The man in question, Rajendra Yadav, did not regularly change needles and this was the cause of spreading the disease. Villagers complained that he would give injections for nearly all ailments for meagre payments, Choudhury said.

Influenza activity is breaking recent records this season, and is not yet slowing down, according to the CDC.

In the weekly report, however, the CDC revealed that levels of H3N2 appear to be dropping. This is the 11th week of intense flu.

Outbreaks in schools are reported whenever flu-like symptoms result in more than 5 percent absenteeism, or more than three elementary school students from the same classroom to be out sick.

A nurse prepares a flu shot at the Salvation Army in Atlanta, Wednesday, Feb. 7, 2018. It's unknown if those victims had gotten a flu shot or not. Though this year's vaccine isn't a ideal match for the viruses in circulation, it's still the best way to protect against infection. Symptoms from H3N2 often are more intense than with other strains, and people are more likely to suffer additional complications such as pneumonia and be hospitalized. People might need to call around to pharmacies to fill a prescription, said Schuchat.

It gets worse. The death toll in future weeks is expected to grow even higher because flu activity is still rising, and the number of deaths follow the flu activity.

People are also recommended to avoid crowds, wash hands often, avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth, clean and disinfect surfaces and maintain a healthy lifestyle.