Little U.S. flu activity so far, CDC says

by Steven Reinberg, Healthday Reporter
Little U.S. flu activity so far, CDC says
Most people 6 months of age and older are urged to get vaccinated.

(HealthDay)—Flu activity in the United States remains at low levels, federal health officials said Thursday.

"Traditionally flu activity starts to pick up at the end of October, and it normally peaks sometime after the first of the year and starts to wind down by March or April," said Tom Skinner, a spokesman for the U.S. .

Each is different, Skinner said, adding, "Sometimes it can arriver earlier, sometimes it can arrive later."

It's too soon to tell what kind of flu season this year's will be, he said. Based on what's known so far, the CDC said the circulating seem similar to those in this year's vaccine.

Skinner noted, however, that based on limited data it's too early to be sure this year's vaccine is a good match.

"Right now some of viruses we see circulating aren't in the vaccine, but it's a really small sample, so we will have to wait and see what happens when activity picks up," he said.

"Even when activity picks up we can't predict what kind of season we will have in terms of severity," he added. "But we do know we are going to have a flu season and we do know vaccination is the most important thing people can do to protect themselves."

Everyone 6 months and older is urged to get vaccinated, Skinner said. It's expected there will be 135 million doses of vaccine available, he said. "Hopefully, we have enough vaccine for everyone who wants to get vaccinated," he said.

The most common strains of flu detected so far in the United States and around the world are influenza A (H3N2), 2009 influenza A (H1N1) and viruses, according to the CDC.

Since mid-July more than 300 cases of A (H3N2) have been reported. The majority of cases resulted from direct contact with pigs, the CDC said.

The flu report was published in the Oct. 5 issue of the CDC's .

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

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

FDA approves flu vaccine for coming season

Aug 14, 2012

(HealthDay) -- The formulation for the vaccine that will help protect against the flu this coming season was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Monday.

CDC: Mild flu season apparently winding down

Apr 07, 2009

(AP) -- The flu season is winding down and turning out to be one of the mildest in years, according to data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Recommended for you

Streets bustling after Sierra Leone shutdown ends

42 minutes ago

Streets in Sierra Leone's capital bustled again Monday after an unprecedented nationwide shutdown during which officials said more than 1 million households were checked for Ebola patients and given information ...

Spain: Ebola test drug out of supply worldwide

2 hours ago

Doctors treating a Spanish priest who was repatriated from West Africa on Monday after being diagnosed with the Ebola virus said there were no samples of experimental drug ZMapp available in the world right ...

A multiscale approach to Ebola response

4 hours ago

The Ebola outbreak in western Africa continues to spread uncontrolled, affecting thus far five countries. On September 16th, President Obama spoke at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention headquarters ...

Overwhelmed west Africa ramps up Ebola response

18 hours ago

West Africa intensified its response to the deadly Ebola epidemic on Sunday, with Sierra Leone uncovering scores of dead bodies during a 72-hour shutdown and Liberia announcing hundreds of new hospital beds.

User comments