Almost no flu cases seen in Md. during typical peak of season

February 12, 2004|By CAPITAL NEWS SERVICE

Maryland health officials said the number of confirmed influenza cases in the state fell to nearly zero last week, a time that they said is typically the peak of the flu season.

The unexpectedly low number of confirmed cases is down from a peak of 350 cases reported during one week in mid-December and mirrored a sharp drop in flu cases across the nation.

While 36 states reported a widespread level of flu activity in mid-December, no state had reported that level in the latest reports from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Melinda Blackburn, an epidemiologist who coordinates the influenza surveillance program for Maryland's Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, said the season does not officially end until May, which leaves time for another spike in cases.

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