Daily Brief: 2017.3.29
Flu case update
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), flu activity in the United States is continuing to slow. During the week ending March 18 flu was geographically widespread in 36 states, including Indiana. Most notably, the CDC reported two additional flu-associated pediatric deaths for the 2016-2017 season. The total number of pediatric deaths, as a result of the flu, now sits at 55 for the season.
(Sources: WHO, CDC)
So far this year, the most common strain of influenza circulating is Influenza A H3N2, accounting for 93.6% of subtyped influenza A samples. The strain is reportedly known to cause more severe illness, especially in young children and people 65 and older. Influenza A H3N2 variant viruses were first detected in people in July 2011. The viruses were first identified in U.S. pigs in 2010. During 2011, 12 human infections with H3N2v were detected. During 2012, there were multiple outbreaks of H3N2v resulting in 309 reported cases.
(Sources: CDC, Healio)
Hospitalization rates for flu was one marker that continued to rise, with CDC documenting a rate 50.4 per 100,000 population. For seniors, the rate rose to 214.0 per 100,000 population to 228.6 per 100,000.
- Viewers are encouraged to visit the MESH Flu Watch site for local and national updates on flu Activity.
- The first and most important step in preventing flu is to get a flu vaccination each year. All children over 6 month of age should be vaccinated against influenza.
- CDC also recommends everyday preventive actions such as staying away from people who are sick, covering coughs and sneezes and frequent handwashing.
(Sources: CDC, WHO)