CDC reports steady rise in influenza

ATLANTA — The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention measured a steady rise in influenza — both in number of cases and severity — for the week ended Feb. 5.

There are 19 states that now are experiencing high levels of influenza-like illnesses as measured by outpatient visits — a measuring stick that provides a sense as to how severe the flu might be in a community but not how prevalent it is. The proportion of outpatient visits for ILI was 4.6%, which is above the national baseline of 2.5%.

However, as many as 37 states reported that the flu is “widespread” as determined by state epidemiologists, the CDC reported.

To date, all of the influenza virsuses characterized this season have been good matches against this year’s flu shot, suggesting those who have been inoculated should be well protected.

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