As Flu Season Gets Rolling, Georgia Hit Harder Than Any State

The most recent CDC national data showed Georgia had the highest level of flu activity in the United States.
The state’s level of influenza-like illness was reported as “High’’ in the report of the week ending Dec. 8. That was the most activity for any state, according to the agency’s map.
There have been four flu-associated deaths in the state since the beginning of disease tracking Sept. 30, the Georgia Department of Public Health said. One of those who died was a child, and the other three were 65 or older.
Metro Atlanta has seen 159 flu hospitalizations over the tracking period.
“Flu activity has been high in Georgia for the past three weeks,’’ Nancy Nydam, a Public Health spokeswoman, said Wednesday. “We are (and have been) above the national baseline, so there is plenty of flu circulating in Georgia.’’
Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta said Wednesday that it’s seeing an increase in flu and respiratory cases resulting in high patient volumes.
The Georgia chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics said that pediatricians in the Savannah and metro Atlanta areas have seen many children with flu.
The data on disease prevalence come after an especially brutal flu season a year ago.
Last winter’s flu season was the deadliest in at least four decades, the CDC said, with an estimated 80,000 deaths in the nation.
In Georgia, there were 155 confirmed influenza-associated deaths reported last flu season, the state Department of Public Health said. That figure may be lower than the actual number because not everyone who dies has been tested for flu, the state agency said. And Public Health added that it may not have been notified of all deaths. Of the reported Georgia deaths, 109 were among people 65 or older.
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