This report provides an update on influenza and other seasonal respiratory pathogen activity for the week ending 25 January 2015. For this season, we will provide detailed influenza update reports on a monthly basis with bulletin style weekly updates in the weeks in between.
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, clinical influenza activity decreased compared to last week but virological influenza activity remained high and there is evidence of continued community circulation of influenza.
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
A guidance document has been issued by HPS with recommendations for the antiviral treatment and prophylaxis of influenza for the season 2014-15.
Three laboratory confirmed influenza cases with severe infection requiring intensive care management (ICU cases) were reported to HPS within the last week (2 influenza A(H3) and 1 influenza A(not subtyped). Five new outbreaks of acute respiratory infection were reported to HPS in week 04 (3 outbreaks of influenza A(not subtyped), 1 outbreak of influenza A(not subtyped) and parainfluenza and 1 outbreak of pathogen unknown).
The levels of respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) and rhinovirus showed continued evidence of decline. The levels of coronavirus, parainfluenza, human metapneumovirus (hMPV) and Mycoplasma pneumoniae (MPN) reported through sentinel and non-sentinel sources (ECOSS) were stable and within expected seasonal levels. The levels of adenovirus reported through sentinel sources increased and were above expected levels for this time of the year, but were stable and within expected levels through non-sentinel sources.