Portland, Or – The first day of winter is still a few weeks way, but the start of flu season appears to be here, with between one-point-seven and two-and-a-half million flu-related illnesses already reported. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, forecasts suggest that flu activity will continue to rise. There’s a 40-percent chance that it will peak in December, which the C-D-C notes would be considered early compared to previous years.
Dr. Jennifer Vines with the Multnomah County Health Office says it can be difficult to predict the flu year to year.

The most recent data for the Portland metro area shows 16.8 percent of people with flu-like symptoms tested positive for flu, a number that has steadily gone up in recent weeks, with 16 influenza-related hospitalizations reported during that week in the metro area.

Dr. Vines says if you haven’t already, it’s not too late to get your flu shot.