Health officials are expecting the 2009-10 flu season to be quite a challenge because of the chance of a higher infection rate. A new virus was first identified last spring in Mexico and is now widespread.

The strain of novel H1N1 flu is similar in virulence and severity to the seasonal flu, yet it appears to be occurring more frequently in children and young adults. It can be expected that most universities are at potential risk for flu outbreaks, said Lawrence Neinstein, Professor of Pediatrics and Medicine Head and Medicine Senior Associate Dean of Student Affairs.

USC officials are asking students, faculty and staff to take precautions in preventing the contraction and spread of the virus. There will be a USC vaccination outreach with the seasonal flu vaccine for students, faculty and staff in October.