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Current Flu Season Worst in 4 Years
Date:4/17/2008

much of that guess work. Researchers reported that flu viruses originate in East Asia and Southeast Asia, and it takes about eight to nine months before these new viruses reach western Europe and North America.

Jernigan said the CDC is currently involved in promoting better surveillance of emerging flu viruses in East Asia and Southeast Asia. The hope is that these surveillance efforts will lead to more effective and better-matched vaccines.

According to the CDC, each year from 5 percent to 20 percent of the U.S. population gets the flu. More than 200,000 people are hospitalized from flu complications, and about 36,000 people die from the disease. Some people, such as older people, young children, and people with certain health conditions, are at high risk for serious flu complications.

More information

To learn more about the flu, visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.



SOURCES: April 17, 2008, teleconference with Dan Jernigan, M.D., deputy director, Influenza Division, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta; April 18, 2008, CDC's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report


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