Southern California Flu Deaths At 95

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(Photo credit: Tim Boyle/Getty Images)

(Photo credit: Tim Boyle/Getty Images)

CBS Los Angeles (con't)

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LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — Despite the above-average temperatures throughout most of the month, doctors say Southern California is in the midst of a flu epidemic with 95 deaths so far this season.

“We’re seeing flu like illnesses at a 70 percent increase compared to our baseline what we would see,” Mission Hospital emergency room Dr. Jim Keaney said.

One of this season’s challenges is the prevalence of the H1N1 flu strain.

“That’s the flu that affects healthy people and kind of the middle age group a little bit more than the average flu,” Keaney said.

At this time last year, health officials say California had nine flu-related deaths.

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