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CDC reports on influenza-related hospitalizations and poverty levels

from IAC Express

CDC published Influenza-Related Hospitalizations and Poverty Levels—United States, 2010–2012 in the February 12 issue of MMWR (pages 101–105). A summary made available to the press is reprinted below.

Some people are more at risk for severe influenza than others but few studies have looked at whether there are differences by socioeconomic status. An examination of data collected over two influenza seasons in 14 states representing 27 million people found that those living in census tracts with ≥ 20 percent of residents living below the federal poverty level had double the rate of influenza hospitalization compared to those where <5 percent lived below the poverty level. This relationship was present in all age and race/ethnic groups and for those needing intensive care and/or who died. People living in high-poverty census tracts represent a demographic group at higher risk for severe influenza outcomes and should be a focus for enhanced influenza vaccination and antiviral treatment efforts. more

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