January 10, 2013
Minnesota appears to be in the midst of the worst flu outbreak since the 2009 H1N1 pandemic, health officials said Wednesday.
A record number of children -- 123 -- tested positive for the flu at
Children's Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota in the first week of
January, and 16 were hospitalized, according to Patsy Stinchfield, the
director of infectious diseases.
The numbers, she said, are higher "than our highest week in the H1N1 pandemic.''
New statewide numbers are expected to be released Thursday, but one
Health Department official said Wednesday that more than 900 people have
been hospitalized so far this season -- a big spike just in the past
week. By comparison, only 552 people were hospitalized in Minnesota
during the entire last flu season.