More deaths reported from this year's flu

A new report reveals seven more children have died from the flu

By Nicole Karlis
Published January 27, 2018 6:36PM (EST)

The flu is continuing to hospitalize people around the country and federal officials warn it could get worse.

"Hopefully we're in the peak currently, since the data is a week behind, or that it peaks soon. Regardless, there is a lot of flu activity happening across the country and likely many more weeks to come," CDC spokeswoman Kristen Nordlund told CNN.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC) weekly flu report, seven more children reportedly died from the flu bringing a nationwide count to 37.

"A total of 37 influenza-associated pediatric deaths have been reported for the 2017-2018 season," the CDC reports.

Since October, there have been 11,965 laboratory-confirmed flu-related hospitalizations, according to the CDC.

This year's flu is also significant because it seems to be more widespread than previous years. The CDC tweeted that this is the first time in 15 years that "all states in the entire continental U.S. have reported widespread #flu activity during the same week."

Some lawmakers are taking action to combat the flu. New York Governor Andrew Cuomo signed an executive order allowing pharmacists to administer flu shots.

"With flu cases reaching epidemic proportions in New York, we must do everything in our power to fight this virus and keep New Yorkers safe," Cuomo said in a statement. "Once again, I urge all New Yorkers to help us combat this quick-spreading strain of flu and make sure they and their loved ones are vaccinated."

In early December, health officials anticipated this season would be particularly bad nationwide since it was picking up earlier than in previous years.

“Flu is picking up and picking up early,” Daniel Jernigan, director of the influenza division at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, told the Washington Post. “A lot of people are getting together in the next few days and weeks. All of those folks who are traveling, some of them will be traveling with their influenza.”

The CDC continues to warn people that it's not too late to get a flu vaccination.

Nicole Karlis

Nicole Karlis is a staff writer at Salon. Tweet her @nicolekarlis.

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