Transcript for Flu Epidemic Widening Across 37 States
causing concern tonight. The CDC declaring there's a growing flu epidemic and we're not even in peak season yet. Here's ABC's Jim Avila. Reporter: Americans are suffering from the flu tonight in epidemic numbers across 37 states. Mid-january saw three children die from influenza. Ten states from Alabama to Georgia in the south, to New Jersey and New York in the east, reporting high level flu activity. Doctors advising a flu shot as soon as possible and before illness hits your family. The vaccine takes up to two weeks to become fully effective. It protects against 95% of flu strains this year. This year a shot is recommended. Hospitals in Washington state report they're running short of beds as the flu rapidly spreads during the height of influenza season. Now through March. Making this advice important -- once the flu takes hold, bedrest and home confinement are advised. If you're sick, stay home. Don't go out and affect other people. Reporter: So far this season, 19 deaths have been attributed to the flu nationwide. It's most dangerous to the very young and the very old. Cecilia. Okay, Jim, thank you.
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