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January 13, 2014

2013/2014 Flu Update #4

Update #4 for January 13, 2014

ILI activity continues, increased in some areas plateaus in others

This weeks Mitigation Journal Flu Update includes publicly available data from the CDC FluView, Google Flu Trends and other media sources.

This report contains data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention 2013/2014 Influenza season for week #1for the period ending January 4, 2014.

In the News

CIDRAP is reporting on the first Canadian death from H5N1. Death of an Alberta resident with travel history to Beijing is the first fatal case of H5N1 in North America.
PhillyDOTcom: bioterror limits efforts needed to fight viruses. 

Rochester media beginning to notice flu season

According to the CDC Flu View site:
During week 1 (December 29, 2013-January 4, 2014), shows continued increase of influenza activity in the United States.
  • Viral Surveillance: Of 9,482 specimens tested and reported by U.S. World Health Organization (WHO) and National Respiratory and Enteric Virus Surveillance System (NREVSS) collaborating laboratories during week 1, 2,486 (26.2%) were positive for influenza.
  • Pneumonia and Influenza Mortality: The proportion of deaths attributed to pneumonia and influenza (P&I) was below the epidemic threshold.
  • Influenza-Associated Pediatric Deaths: Four influenza-associated pediatric deaths were reported.
  • Influenza-associated Hospitalizations: A cumulative rate for the season of 9.7 laboratory-confirmed influenza-associated hospitalizations per 100,000 population was reported.
  • Outpatient Illness Surveillance: The proportion of outpatient visits for influenza-like illness (ILI) was 4.4%, above the national baseline of 2.0%. All 10 regions reported ILI above region-specific baseline levels. Twenty states experienced high ILI activity; seven states and New York City experienced moderate ILI activity; 11 states experienced low ILI activity; 12 states experienced minimal ILI activity, and the District of Columbia had insufficient data.
  • Geographic Spread of Influenza: : The geographic spread of influenza in 35 states was reported as widespread; 12 states and Guam reported regional influenza activity; the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and two states reported local influenza activity; and one state reported sporadic influenza activity, and the U.S. Virgin Islands did not report.
Timeline Comparison
Below are CDC FluView maps that compare the prior two reporting periods against the corresponding weeks of 2012/2013 influenza season. The 2014 week 1 CDC map demonstrates a clustered geographical impact of High ILI activity compared to 2012/2013 map at this time.

2013/2014 CDC Flu Interactive Map for week 1, 2014

2012/2013 CDC Flu Interactive Map for week 1, 2013

Google Flu Trends

Google Flu Trends remains a trusted source for ILI activity and comparison data. According to Google Flu Trends ILI activity has progressed from moderate to high  overall with plateaus noted in other areas.

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