An unusually early eruption of influenza cases, coupled with the presence
of a strain of influenza virus typically linked to more severe illness and
death, has US health officials worried that the nation might be facing a severe
flu season this year.
"We're very concerned that the flu season has had an earlier onset than
we've seen in many years," said Julie Gerberding, director of the Centers
for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), in Atlanta. "And we're seeing some
parts of the country that are having very high levels of widespread flu infection."
Stephenson J. Health Officials Warn Flu Season Could Be Severe. JAMA. 2003;290(23):3052-3053. doi:10.1001/jama.290.23.3052