8 states see 'very high flu activity' & 7 other CDC takeaways

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Eight states recorded very high flu activity for the week of Jan. 1, the highest level as categorized by the CDC, according to the agency's most recent FluView report.

Florida, Georgia, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Dakota, South Carolina, Tennessee and Virginia reported very high flu activity for the week of Jan. 1. Only three states reported very high flu activity the week before.

Twenty-two states reported high flu activity, nine reported moderate activity and four reported low activity. Only Hawaii, Maine, Vermont and Wyoming reported minimal flu activity. Washington, D.C., reported insufficient data. 

Seven other CDC updates:

1. The percentage of visits to an outpatient provider for respiratory illness was 4.8 percent for the week ending Jan. 1, up from 3.8 percent the previous week and above the national baseline of 2.5 percent. 

2. For the week ending Jan. 1, 2,615 lab-confirmed flu patients were hospitalized, up from the week prior. The cumulative hospitalization rate was 2.6 per 100,000 population, up from 1.8 per 100,000 the prior week.

3. Of all specimens tested in a clinical lab, 3.8 percent were positive for flu virus for the week ending Jan. 1, down from 6.2 percent the previous week.

4. Nationwide, 1.3 percent of long-term care facilities reported more than one flu-positive test among residents for the week, up from 0.9 percent the previous week.

5. The national flu, pneumonia and/or COVID-19 mortality rate is 19.9 percent, which sits above the epidemic threshold of 6.9 percent. Among the 3,252 deaths reported for the week, 2,519 had COVID-19 listed as an underlying or contributing cause of death on the death certificate.

6. No flu-associated pediatric deaths were reported to the CDC for the week ending Jan. 1. Two deaths have been recorded this flu season so far.

7. Earlier in the season, most flu cases were reported among Americans ages 5-24. In recent weeks, the proportion of infections occurring among other age groups — especially adults 25 and older — has been increasing.

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