Influenza Season Week 24 ending June 20, 2009

27 06 2009

2008-2009 Influenza Season Week 24 ending June 20, 2009

During week 24 (June 14-20, 2009), influenza activity decreased in the United States, however, there were still higher levels of influenza-like illness than is normal for this time of year.

  • Three thousand two hundred eighty-six (41.9%) specimens tested by U.S. World Health Organization (WHO) and National Respiratory and Enteric Virus Surveillance System (NREVSS) collaborating laboratories and reported to CDC/Influenza Division were positive for influenza.
  • Over 99% of all subtyped influenza A viruses being reported to CDC were pandemic influenza A (H1N1) viruses.
  • The proportion of deaths attributed to pneumonia and influenza (P&I) was below the epidemic threshold.
  • Five influenza-associated pediatric deaths were reported and four of the five deaths were associated with pandemic influenza A (H1N1) virus infection.
  • The proportion of outpatient visits for influenza-like illness (ILI) was below the national baseline. Two of the 10 surveillance regions reported ILI above their region-specific baseline.
  • Twelve states reported geographically widespread influenza activity, seven states reported regional influenza activity, the District of Columbia and 11 states reported local influenza activity, and Puerto Rico and 20 states reported sporadic influenza activity.

U.S. Virologic Surveillance:

WHO and NREVSS collaborating laboratories located in all 50 states and Washington D.C. report to CDC the number of respiratory specimens tested for influenza.

During the 2008-09 season, influenza A (H1), A (H3), and B viruses have co-circulated in the United States. On April 15 and 17, 2009, CDC confirmed the first two cases of pandemic influenza A (H1N1) virus in the United States. As of June 26, 2009, 27,717 confirmed and probable infections with pandemic influenza A (H1N1) virus and 127 deaths (33 deaths in individuals less than 25 years, 89 deaths in adults 25 years of age older, and five deaths with unknown age) have been identified by CDC and state and local public health departments. Reporting of pandemic influenza A (H1N1) viruses by U.S. WHO collaborating laboratories began during week 17 (week ending May 2, 2009). The results of tests performed during the current week are summarized in the table below.

During week 24, seasonal influenza A (H1), A (H3), and B viruses co-circulated at low levels with pandemic influenza A (H1N1) viruses. Over 99% of all subtyped influenza A viruses being reported to CDC this week were pandemic influenza A (H1N1) viruses.

The increase in the percentage of specimens testing positive for influenza by WHO and NREVSS collaborating laboratories may be due in part to changes in testing practices by health care providers, triaging of specimens by public health laboratories, an increase in the number of specimens collected from outbreaks, and other factors.

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