Infections of flu were on the rise in young people in past weeks, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Although flu rates remain low nationwide, the CDC reports that more than 90% of cases are in kids and young people aged 5 to 24.
The H3N2 lineage is responsible for the majority of illnesses, which scientists believe is especially dangerous since it mutates quicker than other influenza strains. The last time H3N2 was the prevalent variant was throughout the 2017-18 flu season, when there were 710,000 flu-related hospitalisation cases as well as 52,000 flu related fatalities in the United States, the highest number since the 2009 H1N1 flu pandemic.
“This is the time of the year when many people are going to be gathering together for the holidays for either Thanksgiving, Christmas or New Year’s, and there’s just the potential to amplify it. It’s coming. It’s not quite clear how large a flu season we’re going to have, but we are going to have a flu season,” explained Dr. Isaac Bogoch.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is looking into a flu crisis at the University of Michigan, when a large number of students had screened positive. In the last month, flu epidemics have been observed on various university campuses. Specialists are afraid that flu-infected college students, as well as other youngsters, might transmit the infection across the country when they return home for the holidays.
As per the CDC, the flu season normally lasts from October through May, with activity peaking in December and February.
Following seasonal flu infections hit an all-time low the year before, when huge portions of the nation were closed down due to the coronavirus outbreak, influenza specialists had earlier expressed fear that the country may be at danger for a catastrophic influenza season in 2021.