Seasonal Influenza Activity is High … and Increasing

Reviewed by: Rossana Rosa, MD; UnityPoint Health

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDCs), seasonal influenza activity has been elevated since late October 2019. So far this season there have been an estimated 6.4 million flu illnesses, 55,000 hospitalizations and 2,900 deaths from influenza.

Key updates on influenza surveillance are prepared by CDCs Influenza Division and published on the website FluView. As of December 28, 2019, outpatient visits for influenza-like illness (ILI) and the percentage of respiratory specimens testing positive for influenza were at levels similar to what has been seen at the peak of recent seasons. Although the predominant virus varies by region and age, nationally B/Victoria viruses are most common, followed by A(H1N1)pdm09; the predominance of B viruses is unusual for this time of the season.  

Influenza vaccination remains the best way to prevent influenza and its potentially serious complications.


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