CDC PRESS CONFERENCE ON FLU EPIDEMIC
CDC says pneumonia, flu were 7.3 percent of U.S. deaths last week
The proportion of all deaths in the United States last week caused by pneumonia and influenza reached 7.3 percent, above the epidemic threshold of 7.2 percent, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said on Friday.
Only the Southwest and California had "normal" flu activity last week, the agency said. The other nine regions had "elevated" activity, confirming that seasonal flu has spread across the country and reached high levels several weeks before the usual time of late January or February.
Drugmakers report U.S. shortages of flu vaccine, Tamiflu
This year's early and potentially severe flu season has created shortages of the children's formulation of the leading treatment and most forms of the top-selling flu vaccine in the United States, according to their manufacturers.
Roche Holding AG told Reuters late on Wednesday that it had a shortage of the liquid formulation of Tamiflu, which is used mainly to slow down or stop the symptoms of the flu in children already infected with the virus.
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