On March 28th, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a *health advisory to notify clinicians that influenza activity remains high in the United States, with an increasing proportion of activity due to influenza A(H3N2) viruses, continued circulation of influenza A(H1N1) viruses, and low levels of influenza B viruses.
The Health Alert Network (HAN) advisory states that influenza should be considered as a possible diagnosis for patients with respiratory illness while local influenza activity remains elevated and widespread, and the season is likely to last several more weeks (see CDC FluView report for details: https://www.cdc.gov/flu/weekly/index.htm).
The health advisory also serves as a reminder that early empiric treatment with influenza antiviral medications is recommended for hospitalized and high-risk patients, especially those 65 years and older. Antiviral treatment should be started as soon as possible after illness onset and should not wait for laboratory confirmation.
Healthcare professionals can find additional resources, recommendations, and guidance here.
*Health Advisory: provides important information for a specific incident or situation; contains recommendations or actionable items to be performed by public health officials, laboratorians, and/or clinicians; may not require immediate action.