Lee Memorial Hospital confirms flu-related death

Dr. Meeta Khan wears a face mask as she examines a respiratory patient at the Rush University Hospital emergency department, Thursday, Jan. 10, 2013, in Chicago. Flu season in the U.S. has hit early and, in some places, hard. But whether this will be considered a bad season by the time it has run its course in the spring remains to be seen. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)

Dr. Meeta Khan wears a face mask as she examines a respiratory patient at the Rush University Hospital emergency department, Thursday, Jan. 10, 2013, in Chicago. Flu season in the U.S. has hit early and, in some places, hard. But whether this will be considered a bad season by the time it has run its course in the spring remains to be seen. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)

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— The flu has already claimed at least one life this season in Southwest Florida.

A spokesperson for Lee Memorial Hospital says the man who died was 65 years old and it was the first confirmed flu-related death in Lee County this season.

Though Southwest Florida is relatively calm, there is one specific reason why experts worry the virus will pick up here very soon. Areas like Boston and Minneapolis are reporting hundreds of flu cases and Florida is becoming a hot bed for the virus as well.

NBC2's flu story

Flu season hits early and hard in more than 40 states

CDC flu tracking map

How to tell a cold from the flu

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