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>> The deadly H3N2 flu strain is now in every US state, according to the Center for Disease Control, with 32 states reporting severe flu activity. Some 30 children in the US have died from the flu this season, according to a leading doctor at the CDC. Health officials are urging all Americans to get the flu shot this year, despite some hesitation out there.
Reuter's health reporter Bill Berkrots.>> The US Health officials are estimating that this year's flu vaccine is about 30% effective. Other years it's been in the 60s. In Australia, this year it was only around 10% effective. There's a tremendous amount of guess work involved in creating the vaccines before we find out the dominant strains are going to be.
>> But even the unlucky ones who do become infected can benefit from the vaccine. Studies have proven it can reduce the severity and duration of the virus.>> Two years ago, 2014-2015 flu season, I think we had 56,000 deaths in this country, over 700,000 hospitalizations. We don't really know how that compares so far this year.
I think North Carolina has reported 42 adult deaths so far this year. So it's quite serious and you need to take precautions and a flu shot is certainly one of the most important precautions.>> You should try to stay home, not go out to the market and do things where you would be exposed to people coughing in your face.
>> Dr. Ken Moore is an emergency medicine specialist in Pomona, California, where the hospital he's at was forced to turn an auditorium into a flu treatment center. Other hospitals in California have setup surge tents to deal with the influx of patients. A school board in Alabama cancelled classes last week and hired crews to deep clean its campuses.
And scores of Americans are dousing their hands with sanitizer because the flu season is expected to last into April.