PORTLAND, Maine — While data show lower seasonal flu cases in Maine compared to other states, the strain that is circulating is more severe and leading to more hospitalizations.

The state Center for Disease Control and Prevention has reported 373 flu cases through Dec. 23, with 99 requiring hospitalization.

State epidemiologist Dr. Siiri Bennett tells the Portland Press Herald most of the cases this year are influenza A, which he says is more likely to cause deaths among adults over 65 and young children.

About 80 to 90 percent of cases this flu season are influenza A, compared to about 60 percent of cases in the 2015-16 season.

Flu season lasts from October to May. Bennett says it’s still too soon to predict what the season will be like.

Information from: Portland Press Herald, http://www.pressherald.com

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