CDC: Influenza Activity Has Been Low, But Will Likely Increase Soon
December 28, 2018 | Aging Services Risk, Quality, & Safety Guidance
Influenza activity across the United States was low in October and November, but will likely increase in the coming weeks, reaching its peak from December through February, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said in the December 14, 2018, Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. The majority of influenza viruses characterized this season were genetically and antigenically similar to the reference virus used in developing the 2018–2019 flu vaccine, CDC said. Overall, the rate of influenza-associated hospitalization remains low and the percentages of deaths attributed to influenza and pneumonia this season are below epidemic thresholds. However, the timing of influenza activity often varies, CDC said, and annual vaccinations should continue to be offered to all persons age six months or older who do not have contraindications.