Key Flu Indicators
During the week of November 1-7, 2009, a review of key indicators found that certain indicators declined, while others continued to rise. Overall, flu activity in the United Sates remained very high. Below is a summary of the most recent key indicators:
- Visits to doctors for influenza-like illness (ILI) nationally decreased this week over last week. This is the 2nd week of national decreases in ILI after four consecutive weeks of sharp increases. (Visits to doctors for ILI is still higher than what is seen during the peak of many regular flu seasons.
- Total influenza hospitalization rates for laboratory-confirmed flu continue to climb and remain higher than expected for this time of year.
- The proportion of deaths attributed to pneumonia and influenza (P&I) based on the 122 Cities Report continues to increase and has been higher than what is expected for six weeks now.
- Forty-six states are reporting widespread influenza activity at this time; This many reports of widespread activity at this time of year are unprecedented during seasonal flu.
- Almost all of the influenza viruses identified so far continue to be 2009 H1N1 influenza A viruses. These viruses remain similar to the virus chosen for the 2009 H1N1 vaccine, and remain susceptible to the antiviral drugs oseltamivir and zanamivir with rare exception.
The rare exception as well as the cases of hospitalization both seem to be good candidates for increased use of peramivir (BCRX) or intravenous Relenza (GSK)/Tamiflu (RHHBY.PK).