The latest figures from the CDC show 29 states and New York City reporting high levels of flu activity, up from 16 states and New York City just one week prior.
Overall, 41 states reported cases.
'It’s about five weeks ahead of the average flu season,' said Lyn Finelli, lead of the surveillance and response team that monitors influenza for the CDC’s National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases. 'We haven’t seen such an early season since 2003 to 2004.'
During that flu season, Joe Lastinger's daughter Emily, 3, died only five days after coming down with the flu in late January.