A brutal flu season is finally on its last legs, but it has taken a heavy toll, including the highest death count among children in at least five years, health officials say.

Low levels of flu-like illness are still popping up in a few spots, according to the latest report from the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. But the coast-to-coast epidemic of midwinter is history.

We never officially declare flu season over theres always flu circulating, even in the summer, said Lynnette Brammer, head of domestic influenza surveillance at CDC. But, she said, the flu has done most of its nasty work for now.

The CDC has previously estimated that a severe season can kill up to 56,000 people, hospitalize up to 710,000 and sicken up to 35 million. This season may have been worse than that, Brammer said. She said the agency will have to do some more number crunching to know for sure.

CDC says that between last fall and this spring, the flu:

Killed at least 160 children, making this the deadliest flu season for children since at least 2012-13, when 171 died. This years toll is likely to rise as delayed reports trickle in, Brammer said.

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