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This flu season is worse than past seasons

Indications are that this year may be even more severe than originally anticipated.

This year's flu season has become one of the more active seasons of recent memory, with the CDC's National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases calling the season "very active."

Indications are that this year may be even more severe than originally anticipated.

The entire continental United States is experiencing a widespread influenza outbreak according to the National Center's director, Dan Jernigan. He says the season began early and is likely peaking now, causing a rapid increase in related doctor's visits and hospitalizations.

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"Flu is everywhere in the U.S. right now," Jernigan said during an emergency briefing earlier Tuesday.

This year's strain of flu, H3N2, is taking its toll on young children and the elderly, with those over the age of 65 seeing the highest number of hospitalizations. The CDC says people between 50 to 64-years-old are also seeing high numbers of hospitalizations.

On top of that, because of the high demand, officials say there have been reports of pharmacies running low on flu antiviral medications, like Tamiflu. CDC officials said they are aware of the shortages, but said they're rather spotty.

If you shop with a specific with a pharmacy chain and your usual location is out, officials say you should be able to check the stock of other stores. The CDC says they're also currently with antiviral suppliers to direct stock to empty shelves.

"Hopefully the shortage is temporary, it will be resolved and people won't continue to have this problem," said CDC official Dr. Alicia Fry.

People will likely have to remain flexible a little longer, because although we may be hitting the peak of the season, Jernigan says we are likely to have between 11 and 13 weeks remaining in this flu season.

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