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The Boston Globe


Boston’s lower-income areas bear brunt of flu

Socioeconomic factors hindering vaccination effort

As Boston grapples with a flu emergency that is crowding clinics and emergency rooms, the illness appears to be exacting an especially heavy toll on three neighborhoods — Dorchester, Roxbury, and Mattapan.

“This follows a pattern we see all too often across Boston and across the country where poor people and people of color are disproportionately affected by disease and illness,” said Barbara Ferrer, director of the Boston Public Health Commission, which on Wednesday declared a public health emergency as the city confronts 10 times as many confirmed flu cases compared with the same time last year.

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