The period of intensive Influenza surveillance for 2014/15 has ended. This is the second of our monthly bulletin reports over the summer period. It provides an update on influenza and other viral respiratory pathogen activity for the previous four weeks. Over the summer (weeks 21-39) an influenza update report will be published every four weeks unless influenza (or other viral respiratory pathogen) activity increases significantly.
This report contains summary epidemiological information on influenza-like illness (ILI) and acute respiratory illness (ARI) activity, its severity and impact in the community and secondary care settings, and vaccine uptake estimates..
The GP consultation rate for influenza-like illness (ILI) and the threshold for normal seasonal activity have been calculated using a new method this season which the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) is recommending should be used across the EU. Please refer to the technical document for further information.
In Scotland, both clinical and virological influenza activity were stable and there is still evidence of continued low level community circulation of influenza beyond the usual seasonal period.
A CMO letter, recommending that antivirals can be used in primary care where clinically appropriate, was issued on the 18th of December 2014 and can be accessed at: http://www.sehd.scot.nhs.uk/cmo/CMO(2014)29.pdf
An updated guidance document has been issued by HPS with recommendations for the antiviral treatment and prophylaxis of influenza for the season 2014-15 (version 2.0 published on 19 February 2015).
Three laboratory confirmed influenza cases with severe infection requiring intensive care management (ICU cases) were reported to HPS within the last four weeks retrospectively (1 influenza A(H3) and 2 influenza B). No new closed setting outbreak of acute respiratory infection was reported to HPS within the last four weeks.
The levels of seasonal respiratory pathogens (respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), rhinovirus, parainfluenza, adenovirus and human metapneumovirus (hMPV), reported through non-sentinel sources (ECOSS), were stable and within expected seasonal levels. The levels of coronavirus were increased and above expected seasonal levels for three out of the last four weeks and the levels of Mycoplasma pneumoniae (MPN) were increased and above expected seasonal levels for week 27.