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Md. officials report dramatic rise in flu cases

January 25, 2011

According to the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene’s flu-tracking system, there has been a dramatic rise in the past couple of weeks in the number of influenza cases across the state.

The status of flu activity in Maryland was upgraded from “local” to “widespread” in mid-January, with a marked increase in the number of flu-related emergency room visits and hospitalizations, the state department of health and mental hygiene said.

The number of cases of flu normally begins to rise in January and typically peaks in late February or early March. The current seasonal flu vaccine protects against the three most-common strains of the virus detected in the U.S. this season, including H1N1.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that everyone older than 6 months be vaccinated.

Vaccinations are available by appointment at the Washington County Health Department on Pennsylvania Avenue in Hagerstown by calling 240-313-3210.

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