(Image source: flickr/Donna Grayson)

BY EMILY SPAIN

 

You're watching multisource health news analysis from Newsy.

It’s finally time to make sure your medicine cabinet is fully stocked for flu season.
The quickly spreading sickness is tardy by a couple months, but health officials say it’s now on the move.  

According to the ThirdAge this is the latest start to the flu season in nearly 25 years.  Generally influenza starts attacking immune systems in December and January, but this year it didn’t hit until February.

The late start has people asking what caused the delay. The head of the Royal College of General Practitioners’ flu-monitoring service attributes the disease drop to better living conditions. Daily Mail quotes him saying:

"The rates of nearly all respiratory infections are falling. There is much less smog, there is far less smoking and there is better hygiene. One of the greatest benefits of central heating may have been not the warmth it brings but the constant hot water."

Other doctors credit the weather for the flu’s slow takeoff, saying the mild winter kept people more active. Here’s what one doc told WFMZ:

"People have been kind of out and about. They are not in enclosed spaces and sneezing and coughing on each other and things like that."

Not only is the flu season running late, but flu cases are also at record lows. The Telegraph reports flu at half the normal activity and at a level you’d usually see during summer months.  A writer for the publication says the drop is partly thanks to vaccination programs and looks back on recent and far-worse flu years:

“The collapse in infections follows the swine-flu pandemic which caused more than 1,000 deaths in the last two winters and saw hospitals running short of vaccines and overwhelmed with patients in need of intensive care.”

CDC reports it has seen spikes in flu cases in California and Missouri during the past two weeks and expects other regions to follow suit.

Transcript by Newsy.

Flu Season Here, Latest Start in Decades

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Feb 19, 2012

Flu Season Here, Latest Start in Decades

 

(Image source: flickr/Donna Grayson)

BY EMILY SPAIN

 

You're watching multisource health news analysis from Newsy.

It’s finally time to make sure your medicine cabinet is fully stocked for flu season.
The quickly spreading sickness is tardy by a couple months, but health officials say it’s now on the move.  

According to the ThirdAge this is the latest start to the flu season in nearly 25 years.  Generally influenza starts attacking immune systems in December and January, but this year it didn’t hit until February.

The late start has people asking what caused the delay. The head of the Royal College of General Practitioners’ flu-monitoring service attributes the disease drop to better living conditions. Daily Mail quotes him saying:

"The rates of nearly all respiratory infections are falling. There is much less smog, there is far less smoking and there is better hygiene. One of the greatest benefits of central heating may have been not the warmth it brings but the constant hot water."

Other doctors credit the weather for the flu’s slow takeoff, saying the mild winter kept people more active. Here’s what one doc told WFMZ:

"People have been kind of out and about. They are not in enclosed spaces and sneezing and coughing on each other and things like that."

Not only is the flu season running late, but flu cases are also at record lows. The Telegraph reports flu at half the normal activity and at a level you’d usually see during summer months.  A writer for the publication says the drop is partly thanks to vaccination programs and looks back on recent and far-worse flu years:

“The collapse in infections follows the swine-flu pandemic which caused more than 1,000 deaths in the last two winters and saw hospitals running short of vaccines and overwhelmed with patients in need of intensive care.”

CDC reports it has seen spikes in flu cases in California and Missouri during the past two weeks and expects other regions to follow suit.

Transcript by Newsy.

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