Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Flu update: mostly in Southern Hemisphere

No more (well, almost no more) flu in Northern Hemisphere, but the Southern Hemisphere is cooling down. 
Flu activity is low throughout  the US and Canada. The only country in Europe reporting moderate flu levels is Armenia. Google trends shows slightly increased activity in Norway, but this may be an artifact of searches. 

According to the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO)/WHO, respiratory illness activity in Chile and Argentina was increasing between Week 12 (March 21-27) and Week 18 (May 2-8). However, almost all of this activity was attributed to non-influenza viruses. Google trends predicts increased activity in Brazil.

Influenza activity was low in tropical regions, Australia and New Zealand. According to the Australia Department of Health and Ageing, the number of laboratory-confirmed influenza cases decreased in recent weeks, although it remains higher than during the same period in 2010.

South Africa National Institute for Communicable Diseases reported low influenza activity as of May 1. According to Google flu trends, however, flu levels increased in the end of May.