More winter health misery as the flu season kicks off

More winter health misery as the flu season kicks off, with schoolchildren worst affected Cases highest in children aged five to 14, says Health Protection AgencyNorth East England appears to be worst affected area of the country Doctors given the green light to prescribe antivirals to those who need themThose in at-risk groups yet to be vaccinated are urged to have flu jab | UPDATED: 10:07 GMT, 21 December 2012 The winter flu season has kicked off, parents have been warned, after an increase in the number of school children falling ill with the infection The flu season has begun, parents have been warned, after an increase in the number of children aged five to 14 falling ill. Doctors were yesterday given the green light to prescribe antiviral medication to those who need it and people most at risk of the infection were urged to have a flu jab. Dr Richard Pebody, head of seasonal flu surveillance at the Health Protection Agency (HPA) said: 'We are seeing an increase in flu activity mainly among school children indicating the start of this year's flu season.' Flu cases in children aged five to 14 have doubled in the past week to reach almost 17 cases per 100,000.