U.S.A. Total influenza hospitalization rates for laboratory-confirmed flu are climbing and are higher than expected for this time of year. Hospitalization rates continue to be highest is younger populations with the highest hospitalization rate reported in children 0-4 years old. The proportion of deaths attributed to pneumonia and influenza (P&I) based on the 122 Cities Report continues to increase and has been higher for five week now than what is expected at this time of year. In addition, 18 flu-related pediatric deaths were reported this week; 15 of these deaths were confirmed 2009 H1N1. Since April 2009, CDC has received reports of 129 laboratory-confirmed pediatric 2009 H1N1 deaths and another 15 pediatric deaths that were laboratory confirmed as influenza, but where the flu virus subtype was not determined. Source: CDC
Europe The pandemic (H1N1) 2009 is spreading across Europe. The situation we face is challenging, but manageable. ECDC and national public health authorities are preparing for the coming influenza season to be more complex than usual. All European countries will be affected, and this will put considerable stress on health care systems. ECDC is continuously monitoring the epidemiological situation and communicating with the EU institutions and Member States, providing advice and educational information about the pandemic based on the European and international experience and the latest scientific data available to our experts. Maps of the outbreak. Ukraine The Ministry of Health has reported yesterday 633,877 cases of acute respiratory illness and 95 deaths related to acute respiratory illness, which represents a significant increase compared to the previous day (+32% for the number of cases and + 10% for the number of deaths). Influenza A (H1N1) has been identified in a number of samples in domestic laboratories and confirmed by the WHO’s reference laboratory in London. A 9-person WHO outbreak assessment team, including experts from ECDC and EU Member States has been deployed at the request of the ministry of health in Ukraine and are presently in Kiev and Lviv. It is clear that the pandemic (H1N1) 2009 has established itself in Ukraine and it is likely that the rapidly evolving situation in Ukraine is mainly related to the pandemic. Source: ECDC
Comment The pandemic is accelerating, but still remain quite mild with most cases managed outside hospitals. The vaccine is becoming available for risk groups and health care personnel. The previous seasonal influenza A/H3N2 seems to have disappeared, as expected and the novel H1N1 will become the dominating influenza virus type.