H1N1 NEWS SCAN: Global flu activity, expiring antiviral, dosing for preemies

Jul 2, 2010

Flu activity up slightly in some parts of world
Global pandemic and seasonal flu activity remains low, but South Africa, New Zealand, and Australia have all noted recent slight increases in respiratory disease, according to the WHO today. South Africa logged its first H1N1 case of 2010, but most flu viruses there are seasonal H3N2. Low levels of H1N1 continue in parts of the tropics, particularly in South and Southeast Asia, the Caribbean, and West Africa. Low levels of type B flu persist in parts of Asia, Africa, and Central America.
Jul 2 WHO update

Canada wrestles with expiring-antiviral issues
Faced with about 9 million expiring doses of the antiviral drug Tamiflu worth $18 million, Canadian officials are exploring the options, according to the Toronto-based Globe and Mail. Public health leaders are faced with three options: destroy the expired doses, reprocess them (to replace the expired ingredients) to prolong shelf life, or make do with remaining stockpiles that won't expire soon. A federal official said a decision on the antiviral stockpiling should come this fall.
Jul 1 Globe and Mail story

Study proposes Tamiflu dosing for preemies
Before its emergency use authorization expired Jun 23, oseltamivir (Tamiflu) was at times prescribed to treat children under 1 year old. Researchers used their experience with 32 premature newborns exposed to the pandemic virus to establish a dosing protocol for the drug. Their results indicate that a twice-daily dose of 1.0 mg/kg in premature neonates produced drug exposures similar to that in older children receiving twice-daily doses of 3.0 mg/kg.
Jul 1 J Infect Dis abstract

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