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Early numbers show slow flu season

Early numbers show slow flu season



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SALT LAKE CITY (AP) -- Utah appears to be in for another mild flu season, although the state Department of Health says the heaviest part of the year is still to come.

The Utah Department of Health reported 23 flu-related hospitalizations as of last week, but that doesn't mean the state has escaped an outbreak.

Rachelle Boulton, a state epidemiologist, noted that the flu season peaks January through March.

"It could end up being something like last year where (the number of cases) increases a little each week," Boulton said. "It's a little bit unpredictable."

Sharon Moon, immunizations coordinator for the Salt Lake Valley Health Department, said the flu vaccine has helped keep the number of illnesses low.

"If we didn't have vaccines, we would have seen many, many more people in the hospital with the flu," Moon said.

The Salt Lake Valley department purchased 12,500 doses of the vaccine and about 2,00 remain.

"We want people to know if they haven't received their flu vaccine, it is not too late," Moon said.

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Information from: The Salt Lake Tribune

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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