Like North America, Europe's flu season has arrived a little late this year, and while they haven't reported the level of activity that we've seen reported in Eastern Europe and Russia (see WHO: Update On Ukraine's Flu Season ), for many countries their season has yet to peak.
Follow the link below for a variety of detailed charts and maps for Epi Week 6.
- Twenty-one of the 46 Member States that reported epidemiological data from surveillance for influenza-like illness (ILI) and acute respiratory infection (ARI) indicated increasing rates for week 06/2016; 37 countries reported influenza-virus detections in specimens from sentinel sources, indicating influenza activity in the WHO European Region as a whole.
- Belarus, Finland, Greece, Ireland and Switzerland indicated high-intensity influenza activity. Influenza activity in the Russian Federation and Ukraine declined from very high in week 05/2016 to medium for week 06/2016.
- A(H1N1)pdm09 viruses continue to predominate, accounting for 90% of subtyped influenza A viruses detected through sentinel surveillance.
- Cases of severe disease, mainly in people aged 15–64 years, increased again in week 06/2016, with most of them associated with A(H1N1)pdm09.
Additional information on influenza in the world is available from WHO’s global updates.
- So far, a predominance of influenza A(H1N1)pdm09 viruses has characterized the 2015–2016 influenza season in most countries in the Region; this virus subtype may cause more severe disease and deaths in adults aged 15–64 years than A(H3N2) viruses.
- Since week 52/2015, several European countries with sentinel surveillance systems for severe acute respiratory infection (SARI) have reported increasing numbers of cases associated with A(H1N1)pdm09 infection. Similarly, countries reporting laboratory-confirmed influenza cases in hospitals and intensive care units (ICUs) have detected influenza A virus in the majority of cases since the start of the season, with A(H1N1)pdm09 being the dominant subtype.
- Most of the viruses characterized so far have been similar to the strains recommended for inclusion in this winter’s trivalent or quadrivalent vaccines for the northern hemisphere.
- Risk assessments for the season are available from the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) and the WHO Regional Office for Europe.