Letter: Concerned about false positives in tracking flu

Regarding "Google tool seeks to track flu trends."

I suppose I am too much of a skeptic. However, there are times in my geographical area that there is much respiratory disease that is thought to be influenza but later turns out to be caused by some other virus or bacterium.

My concern would therefore be about false positives or a pseudo-epidemic. If the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data correlates, then I may be overly cautious?

Samuel Merritt
North Carolina State Lab of Public Health

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