Flu increasing across United States
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), in its weekly FluView report today, noted that cases are rising across the United States, and two states, Louisiana and South Carolina, are seeing moderate activity.
Overall, flu activity is still low, with only 13 states reporting influenza cases. Across the country, the proportion of people seeing medical providers for influenza-like illnesses (ILI) was 1.8%, below the national baseline of 2.2%.
H3N2 is still the dominant circulating strain. Last week 72% of samples tested were positive for influenza A, and 28% for influenza B. H3 strains account for 83% of the influenza A cases.
The CDC said there are no signs of antiviral resistance among tested samples, and that so far, the strains circulating are genetically similar to those chosen for this year's flu vaccine.
Nov 9 FluView summary
Nov 9 FluView report
Italy sees no let-up in H5N8 avian flu outbreaks
Italy has detected several more highly pathogenic H5N8 avian flu outbreaks, 14 in poultry and 2 involving other types of birds, the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) said in separate reports today.
Of the poultry outbreaks, 13 occurred on farms, with 1 involving backyard birds. Most were in Lombardy region located in the north central part of the country. The event in backyard birds was in Lazio region near Rome, and one of the farm-related outbreaks was at a facility in Piedmont region in the country's northwest.
The outbreaks began between Oct 27 and Nov 7, killing 2,429 of 329,246 susceptible birds, which included broilers, fattening turkeys, layer hens, and ducks. The remaining birds were slated for culling.
Italy also detected H5N8 in a rock dove and a kestrel found dead on Oct 23 at a breeding farm and a wild goose found dead on Oct 27 at a nature park. Both of the locations were in Emilia-Romagna region in the northeast.
Italy was one of several countries in Europe that reported several H5N8 outbreaks last season, but was one of the few to report ongoing outbreaks over the warmer months.
Nov 10 OIE report on H5N8 in Italian poultry
Nov 10 OIE report on H5N8 in other types of Italian birds