Flu outbreak affecting more than half of Alabama

us-flu-map-1515-ac295d41623de948The flu virus is widespread in more than half of Alabama’s 67 counties and includes most major cities, according to the Alabama Department of Public Health.

The state is also among 29 nationally dealing with the highest level of flu outbreak as of Dec. 27, the Center for Disease Control announced Monday. That’s an increase from 22 states earlier in December, the CDC said, and “influenza activity continued to increase in the United States.”

Counties in the widespread flu level, according to the ADPH, include the cities of Birmingham, Mobile, Huntsville and Montgomery.

The CDC said 21 children have died nationwide as a result of flu-associated illness during the 2014-15 flu season. None of the deaths have taken place in Alabama. Tennessee, Texas and Minnesota have had the most fatalities with three each, according to the CDC.

The CDC said it has characterized 334 flu viruses collected by U.S. laboratories since Oct. 1, 2014. From Dec. 21-27, 30 percent of the 24,001 specimens tested were positive for flu.

The ADPH also said that a positive flu test is not necessary when determining the number of patients with influenza-like illness. ILI is defined as a fever that is greater than 100 degrees and cough or sore throat.

By: Paul Gattis Source

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