Flu activity still unseasonably high: CDC

The number of flu patients admitted to the hospital increased slightly for the week ending May 14, the CDC's latest FluView report shows. 

Overall, flu positivity levels remain unseasonably high for May, with some states reporting increases. 

Eight CDC updates: 

1. Of all specimens tested in a clinical lab, 7 percent were positive for the flu for the week ending May 14, down from 8.6 percent the week prior. 

2. For the week ending May 14, 3,153 lab-confirmed flu cases were admitted to a hospital, up slightly from 3,071 the week before. 

3. No state reported very high flu activity. New Mexico reported high flu activity, down from the very high activity it had reported for three consecutive weeks before. Florida and Puerto Rico also reported high levels of flu activity. Colorado, New York, Massachusetts, Maine, New Jersey, Rhode Island and the District of Columbia reported moderate activity. Six states — Washington, Virginia, Nevada, South Carolina, Maryland and Connecticut — and New York City reported low flu activity. Remaining states reported minimal activity. Oklahoma reported insufficient data. 

4. No pediatric flu deaths were reported for the week ending May 14. There have been 24 pediatric flu deaths so far this season. 

5. The percentage of visits to an outpatient provider for respiratory illness was 2.4 percent for the week ending May 14, about the same as the week before. This is below the national baseline of 2.5 percent. 

6. Nationwide, 0.7 percent of long-term care facilities reported more than one flu-positive test among residents, about the same as the week prior. 

7. The national flu, pneumonia and/or COVID-19 mortality rate is 7.5 percent, which exceeds the epidemic threshold of 6.5 percent for the week ending May 14. Among 1,409 deaths reported for the week, 592 had COVID-19 listed as an underlying or contributing case of death, and 27 listed the flu. This indicates the current death rate for pneumonia, influenza and COVID-19 is primarily due to COVID-19, the CDC said. 

8. The CDC estimates there have been at least 6.7 million flu illnesses, 69,000 hospitalizations and 4,200 flu-related deaths so far this season. 

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