Summit Call Recap – October 2, 2014
- Influenza Surveillance Update – Sophie Smith (CDC)
- NFID News Conference Summary – Ellyn Terry (NFID)
- Other Items – Litjen Tan (IAC)
Information from CDC
- CDC/Influenza Division Weekly Influenza Surveillance Report and CDC Key Points
- Resources for Communicating about Unexplained Cases of Muscle Weakness/Paralysis
- Sanofi Experiences Shipping Delays of Fluzone
- Influenza Activity in the US and Worldwide, May – September 2014
- NFID & ABC News Flu Twitter Chat
- CDC COCA Call and Media Conference on Ebola Held
- Every Child By Two (ECBT) Compiles Media Information on Its Website
- Summit Website Offers Wonderful Resources on Influenza Vaccination!
SUMMIT CALL RECAP – OCTOBER 2, 2014
Influenza Surveillance Update – Sophie Smith (CDC)
Sophie reported that for week 38, ending September 20, seasonal influenza remains below baseline levels for all of our threshold values for the 2013–2014 season. For the most recent week, 2.44% of specimens submitted for testing were positive, with a mixture of influenza A and B. The ILI-Net national data indicated 1.1% of total patient visits were for ILI, well below the national baseline of 2%.
No new pediatric deaths were reported for week 38, but an additional case has been added to week 37. To date, 108 lab-confirmed pediatric deaths have been reported in the 2013–2014 season. The vast majority of these deaths were associated with influenza A.
The last week of data reported for the 2013–2014 season will be published on Friday, October 3. CDC will begin weekly publication of data for the 2014–2015 season on October 10.
This week’s MMWR includes a report titled Update: Influenza Activity – United States and Worldwide, May 18-September 20, 2014.
NFID News Conference Summary – Ellyn Terry (NFID)
Ellyn provided a brief review of NFID’s 2014 Influenza/Pneumococcal News Conference held September 18, 2014 at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. Health leaders at this high profile event focused on the importance of all persons >6 months receiving influenza vaccine this season.
At the news conference, CDC Director Tom Frieden announced the most recent vaccination coverage estimates. Overall, influenza vaccination rates increased, though coverage among healthy persons age 18–64 years remained low, at 33.9%. Not surprisingly, highest rates were achieved when healthcare personnel (HCP) both recommended and provided influenza vaccine to their patients. Vaccination coverage was at 90% or higher among doctors and nurses, but low rates persist in workers at long-term care facilities.
The news conference was highly successful. The event, which was attended by six television camera crews, resulted in multiple articles and broadcast segments. Key stories appeared in media outlets receiving feeds from the Associated Press, and articles were included in national publications such as Time and USA Today. Social media also was strongly represented, with more than 300 tweets incorporating #fightflu occurring during and after the event. Many of the publications and tweets included photos of Dr. Frieden receiving his influenza vaccine.
A video and press kit are available on the NFID website listed above.
Other Items – Litjen Tan (IAC)
- Rick Zimmerman with the University of Pittsburgh reminded callers about the organization’s great resource, the 4 Pillars Toolkit to Increase Adult Immunizations. He also asked if CDC had any information on reported influenza outbreaks occurring in nursing homes. Sophie was unaware of any new activity in this setting, but she will check on this and send any available information to L.J to share with Summit members via The Summit Buzz.
- L.J reminded callers to be sure to check out the wealth of information available on the Summit website.
INFORMATION FROM CDC
CDC/Influenza Division Weekly Influenza Surveillance Report and CDC Key Points
The CDC weekly influenza surveillance report for week 39, 2014 (ending September 27, 2014) and region specific data are available. Of all deaths reported through the 122 Cities Mortality Reporting System, 5.7% were due to P&I. This percentage was below the epidemic threshold of 6.0% for week 39.
No new influenza-associated pediatric deaths were reported to CDC during week 39. A total of 108 influenza-associated pediatric deaths have been reported during the 2013-2014 season.
Nationwide during week 39, 1.1% of patient visits reported through the U.S. Outpatient Influenza-like Illness Surveillance Network (ILINet) were due to influenza-like illness (ILI). This percentage is below the national baseline of 2.0%. ILI is defined as fever (temperature of 100°F [37.8°C] or greater, and cough and/or sore throat. An Influenza Summary Update of the influenza activity reported by state and territorial epidemiologists, which indicates geographic spread of influenza viruses but does not measure the intensity of influenza activity, is available. This currently reflects data from May 17, 2014 and will be updated with the official start of the influenza season.
Resources for Communicating about Unexplained Cases of Muscle Weakness/Paralysis
CDC is working closely with partners in Colorado and other state and local health departments to investigate reports of 10 children hospitalized with unexplained muscle weakness or paralysis mostly in their arms and legs. Investigations into possible infectious and non-infectious causes are ongoing. CDC has also worked with the California Department of Health to investigate the cause of cases of acute flaccid paralysis with anterior myelitis that were reported to the California Department of Health earlier this year.
On October 3 CDC released two MMWRs with the latest information and guidance for healthcare professionals and related key points to assist in communication activities with parents and healthcare professionals:
CDC also has developed a new feature, Unexplained Paralysis Hospitalizes Children, which it encourages clinicians to share with parent audiences to inform them of the unexplained neurologic illness that has been affecting children and what they can do to help keep their children healthy.
A Clinician Outreach and Communication Activity (COCA) call, Neurologic Illness with Limb Weakness in Children, will take place from 2 – 3 pm ET on October 3 to inform clinicians on the latest situation, surveillance, CDC clinical guidance for testing, patient evaluation, and case reporting for the ongoing investigation of acute neurologic illness. An announcement flyer with call-in details is attached.
Finally, key points for the current outbreak of enterovirus D-68 in the United States have been updated.
Sanofi Experiences Shipping Delays of Fluzone
Sanofi Pasteur has issued a letter to its customers advising of some shipping delays for its Fluzone influenza vaccine. Sanofi anticipates that the majority of its doses will ship by the end of October, and the company sincerely apologizes for the inconvenience this delay has caused. Sanofi plans to deliver every dose that it has committed to produce and will distribute over 65 million doses this influenza season.
Influenza Activity in the US and Worldwide, May – September 2014
The October 3, 2014, MMWR included a report, Update: Influenza Activity – United States and Worldwide, May 18 – September 20, 2014. Key points related to the report are available.
NFID & ABC News Flu Twitter Chat
On behalf of the National Foundation for Infectious Diseases (NFID), please plan to join a Twitter chat on October 7 at 1 pm ET focused on seasonal flu and enterovirus D68 (EV-D68). The #tweetchat, which will be moderated by Richard Besser, MD, chief health and medical editor of ABC News, will cover important information on how to prevent and treat these diseases.
NFID encourages you to join the chat and invite your constituents and followers to join as well. Please find details and sample advance tweets below:
- Date: Tuesday, October 7, 2014
- Time: 1:00-2:00 PM ET
- Hashtag: #abcDRBchat
- Moderator: Richard Besser, MD, chief health and medical editor, ABC News (@abcDRBchat)
Tweet Chat Instructions
- You must have an active Twitter account to participate. If you don’t have an account, you can easily create one.
- Sign into tweetchat.com at 12:45 pm ET on the day of chat. If unavailable, try Twubs.com.
- Once you are signed in, tweet comments, facts, images, videos, and vines as often as you like! Be sure to use the hashtag #abcDRBchat and the “T” for Topic in each tweet. Please note that topics will not be available in advance of the chat.
Sample Advance Tweets
- Don’t miss the #abcDRBchat on #flu and EV-D68: Tuesday, 10/7 at 1 PM ET!
- Join us for Tuesday’s #abcDRBchat to learn more about enterovirus D68 and how to #FightFlu!
- Have questions about flu & enterovirus D68? Follow #abcDRBchat Tuesday, 10/7 at 1 PM ET #FightFlu
- On Tuesday 10/7 @ 1 PM ET, we’ll be joining @NFIDvaccines & @abcDRBchat to talk #flu & EV-D68. Don’t miss it!
CDC COCA Call and Media Conference on Ebola Held
Every Child By Two (ECBT) Compiles Media Information on Its Website
On a daily basis, ECBT assembles significant news media coverage on immunizations in their Daily Clips. Summit partners may find this effort useful.
Summit Website Offers Wonderful Resources on Influenza Vaccination!
Remember to visit the Summit website for the latest on influenza immunization resources. You can also find archived copies of The Summit Buzz there.