Flu may be plateauingMinnesota continues to experience vigorous, widespread influenza activity, with high levels of hospitalizations and deaths reported.
Minnesota continues to experience vigorous, widespread influenza activity, with high levels of hospitalizations and deaths reported. The Minnesota Department of Health updated its Weekly Influenza Activity summary at http://www.health.state.mn.us/divs/idepc/diseases/flu/stats/index.htm Monday. Health officials said important points to note about the current situation include:
• To date, MDH has received reports of 1,842 hospitalizations due to influenza-like illness and has confirmed 60 deaths due to influenza or complications from influena. These numbers are current for reports received as of the week ending Jan. 12.
• By comparison, Minnesota recorded 285 hospitalizations for influenza-like illness in all of 2008-09; 965 in 2010-11 and 552 in 2011-12. In the pandemic year of 2009-10, there were 1,824 hospitalizations.
• One of the reasons the nation is seeing more influenza this year may be because one of the predominant circulating strains is H3N2 strain. In years in which H3N2 is the predominant strain, the nation sees more severe cases of illness, particularly in the very young and the elderly, and more cases overall.
• The south central, central and metro areas of the state continue to have the highest levels of activity. While this is challenging their resources, they appear to be managing well, officials said.