This Year’s Flu Hitting the Young, Healthy
By GILLIAN MOHNEY
Jan. 10, 2014
The flu continues its steady spread across the U.S. during a frigid winter, with the virus widespread in 35 states, up from 25 last week, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control.
This flu season has been particularly hard on adults between the ages of 18-64, often thought of as young enough to fend off the worst flu symptoms. This season 61.5 percent of hospitalized flu patients are between the ages of 18 and 64. It’s a sharp increase from last season when they made up 34 percent of hospitalized flu patients.
Of the 2,486 specimens that tested positive for the flu from the U.S. World Health Organization and the National Respiratory and Enteric Virus Surveillance System, 96 percent tested positive for H1N1, commonly known as the swine flu. Although the flu shot offers some protection against H1N1, it will not fully vaccinate against the virus.