Like most flu seasons, this one is catching up with lots of people.
Based on reports from doctors' offices and emergency rooms, state health officials say that the flu has been widespread for weeks, meaning it's all over the state. They can't say if flu activity has peaked, but February is typically the time.
At St. Joseph Medical Center, officials said they had 20 patients in isolation for either confirmed or suspected flu. The ER has been very busy.
Officials at the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene note that flu shots are still available. City and county health departments offer them, as do retail outlets and doctors' offices. The vaccine includes three strains this year, including the H1N1 flu, and officials believe they are spot on with the mix.
Thousands of people get sick, and some die, every year from the flu -- including seemingly healthy people. Officials say the vaccine does not cause the flu. And this is the first year that the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention isrecommending everyone older than 6 months get the vaccine.