Statistics for Flu

Prevalence Rates of Flu

As many as 1 in 5 Americans come down with the flu each year, and kids are 2 to 3 times more likely than adults to get sick with the flu.

Source: NIH News in Health (NIH)1

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Each year, 5% to 20%of U.S. residents acquire an influenza virus infection, and many will seek medical care in ambulatory healthcare settings (e.g., pediatricians’ offices, urgent-care clinics). In addition, more than 200,000 persons, on average, are hospitalized each year.

Source: CDC2

Death Statistics for Flu

Acute respiratory infections, including pneumonia and influenza, are the 8th leading cause of death in the United States, accounting for 56,000 deaths annually. Pneumonia mortality in children fell by 97 percent in the last century, but respiratory infectious diseases continue to be leading causes of pediatric hospitalization and outpatient visits in the United States. On average, influenza leads to more than 200,000 hospitalizations and 36,000 deaths each year. The 2009 H1N1 influenza pandemic caused an estimated 270,000 hospitalizations and 12,270 deaths (1,270 of which were of people younger than age 18) between April 2009 and March 2010.†

Source: Healthy People (DHHS)3

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The truth is, flu—or influenza—can always be deadly. Each year, the seasonal flu kills more than 36,000 people nationwide and hospitalizes 200,000.

Source: NIH News in Health (NIH)4

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Flu seasons are unpredictable and can be severe. Over a period of 30 years, between 1976 and 2006, estimates of flu-associated deaths in the United States range from a low of about 3,000 to a high of about 49,000 people.

Source: MedLinePlus Magazine (NIH)5

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According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), influenza accounts for approximately 36,000 deaths and more than 200,000 hospitalizations every year in the United States. It is among America's most lethal killers simply because the virus infects so many people—some 5 to 20 percent of the U.S. population every year. (For information on new influenza vaccines, see page 5 in this issue.)

Source: MedLinePlus Magazine (NIH)6

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Some people get very sick - influenza causes deaths every year.

Source: New Zealand Health7

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  1. Source: NIH News in Health (NIH): issue/ nov2015/ capsule2
  2. Source: CDC: HAI/ organisms/ organisms.html
  3. Source: Healthy People (DHHS): 2020/ topics-objectives/ topic/ immunization-and-infectious-diseases
  4. Source: NIH News in Health (NIH): 2009/ December/ feature1.htm
  5. Source: MedLinePlus Magazine (NIH): magazine/ issues/ fall14/ articles/ fall14pg10-11.html
  6. Source: MedLinePlus Magazine (NIH): magazine/ issues/ fall06/ articles/ fall06pg18-21.html
  7. Source: New Zealand Health: your-health/ conditions-and-treatments/ diseases-and-illnesses/ influenza

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Note: This site is for informational purposes only and is not medical advice. See your doctor or other qualified medical professional for all your medical needs.