This report provides an update on influenza and other seasonal respiratory pathogen activity for the week ending 28 December 2014. 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.
Due to an increase in clinical and virological influenza activity there is now evidence of 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.
One laboratory confirmed influenza case with severe infection requiring intensive care management (ICU cases) was reported to HPS within the last week (1 influenza B). No outbreaks of acute respiratory infection were reported to HPS in week 52.
Increasing detections of respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) are consistent with the annual RSV wave. The levels of adenovirus, human metapneumovirus (hMPV), rhinovirus, parainfluenza, coronavirus and Mycoplasma pneumoniae (MPN) reported from ECOSS were within expected seasonal levels in week 52. The levels of adenovirus and hMPV reported from ECOSS in the previous week were increased and above expected seasonal levels.
The levels of hMPV reported from sentinel sources were increased and above expected seasonal levels. Increasing detections of RSV are consistent with the annual RSV wave. The levels of adenovirus, rhinovirus, coronavirus, parainfluenza, and MPN were stable and within expected seasonal levels.
Please note that due to the reduced number of working days in week 52, data in this report must be interpreted with caution.