Sunday, January 23, 2011

Influenza Summary: First weeks of January 2011

According to WHO’s EuroFlu and Public Health Agency of Canada, influenza activity was increasing in the first two weeks of January. 85% of influenza-positive specimens in Canada were influenza A (H3N2), while in Europe, most cases - 67% were influenza A (H1N1). Influenza intensity remains high in England, Ireland, Norway and Denmark. Respiratory activity is increasing in China, Japan, Mongolia and the Republic of Korea. Influenza rates are low in tropical climate areas. The circulation of influenza in Paraguay and Sri Lanka has decreased. Google trends predict that activity will start decreasing by the end of this month. Check international activity CDC page for current information.
US Updates for the first two weeks on 2011:
  • New York City status changed from High to Moderate, but the rest of New York State changed from low to moderate
  • Illinois: from High ot Moderate
  • North Carolina: from Low to Moderate
  • South Carolina and Texas - slightly increased activity, but remains low
  • Georgia and Mississippi - from High to Moderate
  • Utah - from low to moderate (Check CDC pages for graphs and state reports)

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Flu cases on the rise

Since beginning of the year, Influenza activity in the United States has been steadily increasing. The following flu-like condition levels were experienced during week 3 (January 16-22, 2011),:
  • Nine states (Alabama, Indiana, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Texas, and Virginia) experienced high ILI activity.
  • Eight states (Arizona, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, South Carolina, and Tennessee) experienced moderate ILI activity.
  • New York City and nine states (California, Hawaii, Missouri, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, Utah, and Wyoming) experienced low ILI activity.
  • Minimal ILI activity was experienced by 24 states (Alaska, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New York, North Dakota, Ohio, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Vermont, Washington, West Virginia, and Wisconsin).

Compared to two previous weeks,
Activity is Up  (from Moderate to High) in Indiana, Virginia, North Carolina, Texas, Maryland
                      (from Low to  Moderate) in South Carolina and Idaho, Florida
                      (from Minimal to Low) in California
Activity is Down  to Low in Nevada, New York

During week 3, the following influenza activity was reported:
  • Widespread influenza activity was reported by 25 states (Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Mississippi, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Texas, Vermont, Virginia, and Wyoming).
  • Regional influenza activity was reported by 16 states (Arkansas, Florida, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Tennessee, and Wisconsin).
  • Local influenza activity was reported by the District of Columbia and four states (Iowa, North Dakota, Washington, and West Virginia).
  • Sporadic influenza activity was reported by Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and four states (Delaware, Hawaii, Oregon, and Utah).
  • Guam reported no influenza activity.

Influenza activity continues to rise throughout many countries in the Northern Hemisphere. During the week ending January 15, 2011, influenza activity increased in East Asia, North Africa and the Middle East.

Activity in UK and Canada was decreasing

According to the China National Influenza Center, the percentage of influenza-positive respiratory samples in China continues to rise,

According to WHO, influenza activity in Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia increased during the last two to three weeks (as of January 14th). The majority of cases were influenza B. Influenza activity is increasing in Iran and Pakistan, where the predominant influenza A subtype is 2009 H1N1. Since October, 2010, there have been 122 influenza-related deaths in Egypt.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Flu activity increasing in Europe, remains moderate but widespreads in US

In the first week of January, United Kingdom and Denmark had the highest flu circulation in Europe, (High in England and Ireland, moderate in Whales and Scotland), followed by Belgium, France, Israel, Italy, Luxemburg, Spain, and Malta.  Ukraine and Russia also experienced high flu activity. Most flu isolates are 2009 H1N1.
In Japan, there were more flu incidents, mostly of 2009 H1N1 origin. Google flu map predicted lower activity for Japan and highest for Norway, lowest for the Southern hemisphere. 
In the United States, influenza-like illness (ILI) was down the week before but still above the national baseline. Yet three more states reported widespread flu than the week before, updating the list to: Alabama, Arizona, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, New York, North Carolina, and Virginia. New York City and six states: Alabama, Georgia, Illinois, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Oklahoma reported high ILI activity, Nevada and New Jersey reported moderate ILI activity, and the remaining states reported either low or minimal activity. No antibiotic resistant strains have been found.