Where flu activity stands as of Dec. 31: 5 FluView notes

Flu activity remains high, but continues to decline in most parts of the country, the CDC's latest FluView report shows. 

The report is based on data through Dec. 31, meaning any possible uptick from holiday gatherings likely wouldn't be reflected yet. 

Five notes from the report: 

1. Nearly 19,000 lab-confirmed flu patients were hospitalized for the week ending Dec. 31. About 18,000 flu patients were admitted to hospitals the week prior. The current overall cumulative hospitalization rate (48.6 per 100,000) for the 52nd week of the flu season remains nearly four times higher than the highest rate observed during this same week since the 2010-11 flu season. 

2. Thirteen influenza-associated pediatric deaths were reported in the week ending on Dec. 31, with a total of 74 pediatric flu deaths in the 2022-23 season. 

3. Just over 5 percent of outpatient visits were for respiratory illness in the last week of December, down from 6 percent the week prior. 

4. The CDC estimates there have been at least 22 million flu cases, 230,000 hospitalizations and 14,000 deaths so far this season. See how flu deaths compare to past seasons here

5. Thirty-nine states and regions reported high or very high flu activity levels for the week ending Dec. 31, down from 44 that reported the same a week prior. 

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