The chart above depicts flu activity in New York State over the last seven flu seasons as measured by Google Flu. As you can see, this year's season got off to an unusually early start.
So, we're in the clear? Maybe.
It appears that the H1N1 wave has passed through the area. But if you dig through the surveillance reports from the CDC, you'll notice that almost all the samples that have been sub-typed are H1N1. This is the case both for New York's region and the nation as a whole.
What's that mean? Well, it could (emphasis on the could) mean that the "regular" flu season -- with its "typical" after-December peak -- is still ahead of us. (Or it might not -- the flu season in the southern hemisphere this year appeared to be mostly H1N1.)
<iframe marginwidth="0" marginheight="0" border="0" src="http://www.flu.gov/widgets/vaccinelocator.html" title="Flu Vaccine Locator" style="margin: 0px 0px 20px 20px; float: right;" frameborder="0" height="151" scrolling="no" width="269">http://www.flu.gov/widgets/vaccinelocator.html</iframe> So if you've been thinking about getting a flu shot, it's still probably a good idea.* That's true for the H1N1 jab, too (it's been so long since a flu virus similar to H1N1 has bounced around that most people don't have built-up immunity to it).
The feds have put together a flu shot locator for both seasonal and H1N1 shots (the box on the right). Albany County is giving free H1N1 shots through the end of the year by appointment (447-4505 to register). And also try your doctor for seasonal flu shots.