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Flu season starts early


UNDATED (WSAU-Wheeler News)   The flu season has started early in Wisconsin for the second year in a row. State health officials have confirmed 25 cases. Fifteen of those people were hospitalized, about half from Milwaukee County. Normally young children and older people are the most likely to be sent to the hospital for the flu. This fall Milwaukee has seen people of all ages hospitalized, and city disease control director Paul Biedrzycki calls that a "little disconcerting." He says respiratory illnesses are increasing in general, along with cold viruses.

Last year the state's flu season peaked in December -- the earliest in almost 10 years. Normally it peaks in January or February.

State epidemiologist Tom Haupt says the "A" and "B" flu strains are going around, and this season's vaccine covers both. Haupt says there's plenty of vaccine available -- and it's not too late to get a flu-shot. With the wider variety of people getting hospitalized, Haupt says everyone over six-months should get vaccinated.