NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – If you’re heading south for the holidays, health officials are urging you to make sure you have your flu shot.

The CDC reports high infection levels across seven southern states and Puerto Rico.

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This is the highest infection rate at this point of the season in a decade.

There have been 573 confirmed flu hospitalizations reported between Oct. 1 and Nov. 23.

Five pediatric deaths related to the flu have also been reported.

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Experts say these numbers aren’t a good sign for the season, but it’s not too late to get a flu shot.