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Flu virus now widespread throughout U.S.

By Michelle Kapusta,

With the flu season officially upon us, people are showing up at hospitals all over the country with symptoms of the virus.

According to USA Today, the main circulating strain is H1N1, which caused the flu pandemic in 2009.

This year, the flu season started out most prevalent in the South, with six reported deaths in Texas, seven in Arkansas and 13 in North Carolina.

The virus made its way northward, and last week there were 71 influenza-related hospitalizations in Minnesota alone, the Associated Press reports.

Six of the nation’s reported deaths have been children.

"It's too early to tell how severe it's going to be but we're still on the up slope of the flu season, so what we can expect is more flu, more intense disease and more deaths over the next few weeks," said Joseph Bresee, a flu expert with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The CDC reminds everyone to get flu shots annually, especially children and the elderly. It is not too late to get vaccinated to ensure protection for you and your family.

 
 

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