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Vaccinations and the Elderly- Part II of a II Part Series

Looking for regular updates as to where influenza is circulating including the latest information on the swine flu? Check www.cdc.gov/flu/weekly

Another good source to keep you updated on how the flu season is spreading in the United States and the world is at:  https://www.google.org/flutrends/us

(5/1/18)- During week 16 (April 15-21, 2018), influenza activity decreased in the United States.

o    Overall, influenza A(H3) viruses have predominated this season. Since early March, influenza B viruses have been more frequently reported than influenza A viruses. The percentage of respiratory specimens testing positive for influenza in clinical laboratories decreased.

o    The proportion of deaths attributed to pneumonia and influenza (P&I) was below the system-specific epidemic threshold in the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) Mortality Surveillance System.

o     Four influenza-associated pediatric deaths were reported.

o     A cumulative rate of 105.3 laboratory-confirmed influenza-associated hospitalizations per 100,000 population was reported.

o    The proportion of outpatient visits for influenza-like illness (ILI) was 1.7%, which is below the national baseline of 2.2%. One of 10 regions reported ILI at or above their region-specific baseline level. Three states experienced low ILI activity; and New York City, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and 47 states experienced minimal ILI activity.

o     The geographic spread of influenza in four states was reported as widespread; Guam, Puerto Rico and nine states reported regional activity; 25 states reported local activity; the District of Columbia, the U.S. Virgin Islands and 10 states reported sporadic activity; and two states reported no influenza activity.

 

(4/16/18)- During week 14 (April 1-7, 2018), influenza activity decreased in the United States.

o    Overall, influenza A(H3) viruses have predominated this season. Since early March, influenza B viruses have been more frequently reported than influenza A viruses. The percentage of respiratory specimens testing positive for influenza in clinical laboratories decreased.

o     The proportion of deaths attributed to pneumonia and influenza (P&I) was below the system-specific epidemic threshold in the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) Mortality Surveillance System.

o    Nine influenza-associated pediatric deaths were reported.

o     A cumulative rate of 101.6 laboratory-confirmed influenza-associated hospitalizations per 100,000 population was reported.

o    The proportion of outpatient visits for influenza-like illness (ILI) was 2.1%, which is below the national baseline of 2.2%. Six of 10 regions reported ILI at or above region-specific baseline levels. Two states experienced high ILI activity; two states experienced moderate ILI activity; 11 states experienced low ILI activity; and New York City, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and 35 states experienced minimal ILI activity.

o    The geographic spread of influenza in seven states was reported as widespread; Guam, Puerto Rico and 22 states reported regional activity; the District of Columbia and 16 states reported local activity; and the U.S. Virgin Islands and five states reported sporadic activity.

 

(4/8/18)- During week 13 (March 25-31, 2018), influenza activity decreased in the United States.
(3/31/18- During week 12 (March 18-24, 2018), influenza activity decreased in the United States.
(3/26/18)- During week 11 (March 11-17, 2018), influenza activity decreased in the United States.
(3/18/18)- During week 10 (March 4-10, 2018), influenza activity decreased in the United States.
(3/12/18)-
During week 9 (February 25-March 3, 2018), influenza activity decreased in the United States.
(3/4/18)- During week 8 (February 18-24, 2018), influenza activity decreased in the United States.

 

(2/26/18)- Japan’s health ministry has granted fast-track approval to Shinnogi & Co.’s.flu-virus killing drug Xofluza for sale in that country. The pill can kill the virus in 24 hours, but it may not be available until May at the earliest, because the Japanese national insurer has not set a price for the drug.

A late stage trial showed Xofluza was faster at killing the flu virus than any other treatment including Roche AG’s Tamiflu.

During week 7 (February 11-17, 2018), influenza activity remained elevated in the United States.
(2/18/18)- During week 6 (February 4-10, 2018), influenza activity remained elevated in the United States.
(2/11/18)- During week 5 (January 28-February 3, 2018), influenza activity increased in the United States.
(2/6/18)- During week 4 (January 21-27, 2018), influenza activity increased in the United States.

(1/30/18)- Medical experts are advising people who have not received the flu shot to get it, even though it is late in the season. If your medical provider is out of the vaccine, you can go to www.vaccinefinder.org to find the nearest medical facility that has the vaccine available.

The 2017-2018 flu season is on track to match the 2014-2015 season when 34 million Americans got the flu, 710,00 were hospitalized by it and about 56.000 died from it.

(1/26/18)- During week 3 (January 14-20, 2018), influenza activity increased in the United States.

(1/24/18)- The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)- reported on Monday that the number of people sick with the flu is continuing to climb, and has not peaked yet, as it does in the “normal” flu season. This flu season is the most intense since the 2009-2010 pandemic.

The percentage of outpatient visits has now surpassed all preceding years back to the 2009-2010 flu season, when a new strain of the flu virus spread around the world.

Medical experts are now estimating that this year’s flu vaccine has been less than 30% effective.

(1/21/18)- This year’s flu season is very similar to the 2014-2015 flu season, with both being dominated by the H3N2 flu strain, and both being “moderately severe”. A little less than 6% of all Americans seeking medical care now have flu symptoms.

During week 2 (January 7-13, 2018), influenza activity increased in the United States.
(1/16/18)- During week 1 (December 31, 2017-January 6, 2018), influenza activity increased in the United States.
(1/7/18)- During week 52 (December 24-30, 2017), influenza activity increased sharply in the United States.
(12/31/17)- During week 51 (December 17-23, 2017), influenza activity increased sharply in the United States.
(12/26/17)-
During week 50 (December 10-16, 2017), influenza activity sharply increased in the United States
(12/18/17)- During week 49 (December 3-9, 2017), influenza activity increased in the United States.
(12/10/17)- During week 48 (November 26-December 2, 2017), overall influenza activity increased slightly in the United States
(11/23/17)- During week 45 (November 5-11, 2017), influenza activity is increasing in the United States.
(11/12/17)- During week 44 (October 29-November 4, 2017), influenza activity remained low in the United States, but is increasing.

(11/10/17)- Last year’s flu vaccine was only 20% to 30% effective in the U.S. because the predominant flu strain, H3N2, mutated upon contact with chicken eggs when grown in culture to make vaccines. If the predominant influenza strain this year is H1N1, the vaccine could be as much as 60% effective, but if it's H3N2, poor results may repeat

(11/6/17)-During week 43 (October 22-28, 2017), influenza activity was low in the United States.

FOR AN INFORMATIVE AND PERSONAL ARTICLE ON PRACTICAL SUGGESTIONS WHEN SELECTING A NURSING HOME SEE OUR ARTICLE "How to Select a Nursing Home"

Please see Vaccinations and the Elderly –Part I of this Series

By Allan Rubin
updated May 1, 2018

http://www.therubins.com

To e-mail: hrubin12@nyc.rr.com or allanrubin4@gmail.com

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