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U.S. flu reports reach five-year high in January

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Nearly 5 percent of all Americans reported having the flu in January, the highest level Gallup has measured in any month since it began tracking flu daily in 2008. The average rate in 2008-2009 was 3.3 percent, 2.7 percent in 2009-10 (and this, amid the H1N1 flu outbreak) and 3.0 percent in 2010-11. Meanwhile, the Centers for Disease Control report a similar trend, announcing that the percentage of people visiting their healthcare provider for flu-like illnesses ranged from 4.8 percent to 4.4 percent across the month of January.