IOWA -- The Iowa Department of Public Health is reporting a sharp increase in cases of the flu and deaths caused by the virus.
In the last week, 29 Iowans died from influenza-related illness. That pushes the total number of flu deaths since last October, when the flu season began, to 126. Data shows 4.5% of students in Iowa were reportedly absent from school due to illness last week.
Federal health officials believe it is currently the peak of the flu season.