MN Department of Health asking for your help to track the flu

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The worst of Canada's flu season may be over, according to new national figures. Photocopier buttons are rarely wiped down and usually a hotbed mashup of several types of germs that can make you ill.

It's early, but the current flu season is shaping up to be gentler than last winter's unusually brutal one, US health officials said. Designing the correct immunization against flu means guessing which strain or strains will be the big ones, and then making an effective deterrent. Furthermore, there have been between 2.9 million and 3.5 medical visits, and about 69,300 to 83,500 hospitalizations so far.

Three children's deaths related to the flu were reported in the week ending January 5, bringing the pediatric death toll to 16 for this season, according to the CDC.

The U.S. saw one of the worst flu outbreaks in almost a decade during the 2017-2018 season, with more than 900,000 cases of hospitalizations and over 80,000 deaths, the CDC estimates.

The latest Center for Disease Control report lists flu activity in 30 states so far.

Doctors say that pregnant women are also at a high risk for flu complications.

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However, the Boston Children's Hospital's Computational Health Informatics Program (CHIP) has found a way to estimate the flu activity by using machine learning and forecasting methods together. Compared to Google Flu Trends who worked from 2009 to 2015, ARGO alone was much better. Sixteen children have died from influenza in the USA and we are halfway through the height of the flu season.

"This year, we're really seeing an impact in people under the age of 10", Goodison said.

"This year the flu is affecting young to middle-aged people with chronic diseases", said Jennifer Russell, New Brunswick's chief medical officer of health.

"It's never too late for the vaccine as long as flu is circulating - and we're just headed into peak season, not only in Montana but around the country too".

"We can not take the risk any more", he said.

In Illinois, reported influenza illnesses for this year are trending far below last year, when flulike illnesses peaked in mid- to late December with more than 6 percent of patients visiting physicians with those symptoms, Arnold said.