The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a health advisory this week to notify clinicians that influenza activity remains high in the United States.
Influenza A(H3N2), Influenza A(H1N1) viruses and influenza B viruses are all still circulating.
Influenza A(H3N2) viruses may be associated with severe disease in older adults. The CDC says antiviral treatment should be started as soon as possible after illness onset and should not wait for laboratory confirmation for hospitalized and high-risk patients, especially those 65 years and older.
Antiviral treatment can benefit other individuals with influenza. While current guidance focuses on antiviral treatment of those with severe illness or at high risk of complications, antiviral treatment may be prescribed for any previously healthy (non-high risk) outpatient with suspected or confirmed influenza who presents within two days after illness onset. Clinical judgment—considering the patient’s disease severity and progression, age, likelihood of influenza, and time since onset of symptoms—is important when making antiviral treatment decisions for outpatients who are not at increased risk for influenza complications.