Flu rates on the rise globally

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently announced that five states have reported widespread influenza A activity, up from none as little as two weeks ago.

The announcement, which came last week, says that New York joins four Southern states - Alabama, Mississippi, Georgia and Virginia - in showing increased activity.

The report also says that 120 samples taken of the flu virus show that it matches well with the seasonal flu vaccine.

Canada also reported an increase in all of its national surveillance flu indicators, with the prairie provinces of Ontario and Quebec showing particular increases.

The U.K. continues to be hit hard by swine flu cases, despite an end to the pandemic being declared in August. Since the beginning of October, there have been 39 deaths attributable to the disease. Most of these deaths were among those under the age of 65.

In Sweden, a seven-year-old boy recently died as a result of a swine flu infection. The death is Sweden’s first this season. The boy was one of three being treated in an intensive care unit for the flu.

The CDC noted the recent increase in swine flu cases in the United States, but believes there be no extraordinary activity, as opposed to last year.