12,000 dead from flu so far this season
The Center for Disease Control says 12,000 Americans have died from the flu so far this season. Twenty-two million have been diagnosed with influenza and 210,000 of them required hospitalization. Seventy-eight of those deaths were children.
While those numbers sound terrifying, the mortality rate for the flu is actually .0005 percent, around 1/20 of a percent. The number of people hospitalized is not higher than usual overall, though more children and young adults have been hospitalized. Of those hospitalized, the majority were over 65 or also suffering from another underlying medical condition that complicates the flu.
Forty-seven states including Ohio, Kentucky, and West Virginia are reporting high levels of flu activity.
The CDC suggests that everyone over the age of 6 months get a flu shot, especially the elderly or those with health issues. The CDC has identified over 1,200 different types of flu viruses so far since the flu season started back in September.