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The Florida Department of Health works to protect, promote & improve the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county, & community efforts.

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Influenza

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For more information about Avian Influenza (H7N9), please click here: Avian Influenza (Bird Flu)

Influenza
Influenza, or flu, is a respiratory infection caused by a variety of flu viruses. The "flu" is a common catch-all term used for a variety of illnesses, but it correctly applies only to the upper respiratory disease caused by the influenza virus.

Estimates are that between 15% and 40% of the population will develop illness from influenza every year. An average of about 36,000 people per year in the United States die from influenza, and 114,000 per year have to be admitted to the hospital as a result of influenza infection. Anyone can get the flu (even healthy people), and serious problems from influenza can happen at any age. People age 65 years and older, people of any age with chronic medical conditions, and very young children are more likely to get complications from influenza.

For the most current information about influenza in Florida, please see Florida's weekly surveillance report, the Florida Flu Review.


Week 35-36, 2014 Florida Flu Review Surveillance Summary
 

National

  • Influenza activity continues to circulate at low levels nationally.
     
  • The predominantly circulating strain in recent weeks has been influenza B, which is typical for this time of year. 
     
  • The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention continue to recommend vaccination as long as influenza viruses are circulating. 

    • Nationally (including Florida), almost all circulating influenza is a good match for the vaccine.

State

  • Emergency department (ED) and urgent care center (UCC) influenza-like illness (ILI) visits have remained low but are increasing, which is typical for this time of year.
  • In weeks 35 and 36, 36to the specimens were submitted to Bureau of Public Health Laboratories (BPHL) for influenza testing. Twelve specimens tested PCR positive: three for influenza A (H3) and nine for influenza B.
  • In week 36, the preliminary estimated number of deaths due to pneumonia or influenza in Florida is lower than the seasonal baseline, based on previous years' data.

  • Pasco County reported one outbreak of influenza in a skilled nursing facility in week 36.
New! Letter to Providers: Influenza Prevention (March 14, 2014)
Letter to Providers: Pregnant Women and Influenza Vaccination Recommendations (December 17, 2013)
Press Release: DOH Reminds Pregnant Woman that Flu Vaccination is Important (December 12, 2013)
Antiviral Usage: Influenza
Influenza Fact Sheet for Home
Influenza General Public Fact Sheet
Florida Influenza Weekly Surveillance (Flu Review)
Florida Influenza-like Illness Surveillance Network
Guidelines for the Flu Lab Report in Merlin
The Flu In the United States (CDC
Press Release (December 28, 2010)
Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV)
Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS)
Information for Directors of Long-Term Care Facilities
Novel Influenza A H1N1 Outbreak: Florida Response Satellite Broadcast
Pandemic Influenza