CDC: Flu Activity Continues to Be High Across the United States

Activity decreased in some areas during the second week of January

FRIDAY, Jan. 18 (HealthDay News) -- Flu remains at epidemic proportions across the United States, but flu activity decreased in some areas during the second week of January, according to FluView, a weekly influenza surveillance report prepared by the Influenza Division of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Officials from the CDC assessed state, local, and territorial health departments, laboratories, vital statistics offices, and health care providers. Surveillance encompassed viral, geographic, outpatient, hospitalization, and mortality monitoring. Activity remained moderate or high in a total of 40 states and New York City, but was considered widespread in 48 states. There were 3,638 new specimens with positive test results (29.4 percent of specimens tested).

During the week of Jan. 6 to 12, the CDC notes that nine new influenza-associated pediatric deaths were reported. Among all deaths reported, 8.3 percent were due to pneumonia and influenza. Adults 65 years and older accounted for 49.6 percent of all influenza-associated hospitalizations. Influenza A subtype accounted for the majority of positive tests (82.5 percent). Influenza-like illness accounted for 4.6 percent of all outpatient visits for the week. Among the 2009 influenza A (H1N1) and A (H3N2) virus subtypes, high levels of resistance were seen to adamantane antiviral medications (amantadine and rimantadine).

In summary, the CDC notes that, "during week two (Jan. 6 to 12), influenza activity remained elevated in the United States, but decreased in some areas."


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