MINNEAPOLIS (AP) - Health officials are concerned about a recent spike in the number of flu cases in Minnesota.

Flu patients have been filling urgent care centers and emergency rooms across the state. Health officials say more than 120 Minnesotans were hospitalized with the flu in the week ending Dec. 22. That's nearly twice the number of cases in the previous week.

Minnesota Department of Health infectious disease director Kris Ehresmann says it's still early, so the flu season has the potential to be severe.

Fairview Health Services chief clinical officer Dr. Brent Asplin says his community hospitals have seen the highest number of flu patients since H1N1. About 1,800 people in Minnesota were hospitalized during a 12-month period in the 2009 H1N1 flu pandemic.

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