LA CROSSE, Wisconsin This is the worst outbreak of the flu virus around, the country, in a decade, heath experts said.
The Centers for Disease Control said so far 18 children have died from the flu and 41 states have widespread influenza activity
That's up 25-percent from just two weeks ago
They said hardest hit region is near the Great Lakes.
Nearly 60-percent of patients complaining of flu like symptoms that went to the hospital tested positive for the flu.
CDC said the flu season usually begins about now, but this year's season began in October.
Gundersen Lutheran Infection Control said its hard to know what's going on with the flu because we only test for the flu when people are hospitalized.
Testing the flu's DNA helps them create next year's flu vaccine.
"We can't say for sure, is this a vaccine failure?" Bridget Pfaff, Gundersen Lutheran Infection Control said. "Is this just enough drift that people are getting a little sicker than normal? We're not seeing horrible illness in our community."
Flu shots are designed to last all season and they're still available.
In general, it's safe for most everyone older than 6-months.
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