Flu picking up in state; still classified as ‘sporadic’

AP Photo

AP Photo

Though the temps are just starting to drop and you can sometimes still feel a shadow of summer in the air, fall is definitely here and, with it, flu season.

The Connecticut Department of public health reports that influenza activity is beginning to increase in Connecticut and has been classified geographically as “sporadic.” Traditionally,influenza was monitored during the eight-month period from October through May; however, the DPH has extended its flu surveillance into a year-round effort. All data are considered preliminary and updated with available information each week through May; a final report will be available before the start of the next season. Here are some of the key facts about flu season in the state thus far:

  • Statewide emergency department visits attributed to the “fever/flu syndrome” remain below 4 percent  statewide; 5 percent is generally considered the minimum threshold when there is increased influenza-associated ED visits.
  • The percentage of outpatient visits with influenza-like illness have been increasing during the last two weeks to a level but remains below 1 percent statewide, considered the baseline when there is increased influenza-associated visits in the outpatient setting.
  • The percentage of unscheduled hospital admissions due to pneumonia has remained at or below a level of 4 percent statewide.
  • Hospitalized patients with laboratory-confirmed influenza are beginning to be reported, with a current season total of 12.  No influenza-associated deaths have been reported to the DPH during this current flu season.  A total of 11 hospitalizations are associated with Type A influenza and 1 with Type B.
  • A total of 30 positive influenza reports have been reported for the current season.  Influenza was reported in residents of 7 of 8 Connecticut counties: New Haven (8 reports), Fairfield (7), New London (6),Windham (3), Litchfield(2), Hartford (2), Middlesex (2). No cases were reported in Tolland County.
Amanda Cuda

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