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February 20, 2014

Flu season waning; younger adults hit hardest

ATLANTA —

As the flu season winds down, health officials say it wasn't as bad as last year and the vaccine worked better. But younger adults were hit harder because of a surge of swine flu.

Overall, hospitalization rates for the flu are only about half what they were last winter. It has been a fairly mild season for the elderly — usually the most vulnerable group to flu and its complications.

But it's been a different story for younger adults. The government said Thursday that nearly two-thirds of the hospital stays this winter were in adults ages 18-64. Most flu seasons, it's only one-third.

Swine flu was the dominant strain this winter and it hits young adults harder.

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