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For the majority of those unfortunate enough to contract influenza, the prognosis, after enduring anywhere from one day to one week of fever, headaches and dizziness, is a full recovery. But, for high-risk groups – including infants, the elderly and the infirm – the flu can be deadly.

Unsurprisingly, public health authorities take outbreaks very seriously. Each week during the influenza season, which runs from September to April and peaks this month, the US government's health agency r

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