Flu Season Escalating in These States: While the spread of COVID-19 is on the decline, the flu season is just gearing up. Latest data released Friday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reveal an increase in influenza activity in several U.S. states.
In the past week, six “jurisdictions” (states or territories) witnessed moderate or high flu activity, a jump from just two jurisdictions the week before.
The situation is most severe in Alaska, with high flu activity. In Florida, Hawaii, New Mexico, Puerto Rico, and Washington, D.C., flu activity is moderate, according to the CDC.
COVID-19 treatments entering the market with a substantial price tag.
While the majority of states report “low” or “minimal” flu activity, experts predict things will worsen before getting better. The timing of flu season varies each year, but it typically starts to escalate in October, with the peak often reached in February.
Flu levels are still considered low in Alabama, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Louisiana, Wyoming, and South Carolina. However, all these states witnessed an uptick in reported flu symptoms last week.
It’s crucial to note that the CDC map doesn’t capture all flu activity in a given community. The data is based on people reporting to healthcare facilities with flu symptoms—fever, cough, or sore throat. It doesn’t rely on lab-confirmed influenza cases.
This means it might include cases turning out to be other respiratory illnesses, while also potentially missing cases where people stay home and combat the sickness independently.
CDC experts anticipate this year’s respiratory virus season will resemble last year’s. They expect the flu season, in particular, to fall within the “typical range of severity.” However, even in typical seasons, the number of illnesses, hospitalizations, and deaths can vary widely, according to the 2023-24 forecast.
Flu shots are already available in pharmacies and doctor’s offices, and they can be received simultaneously with a COVID-19 booster.