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Weekly Influenza and Acute Respiratory Infection Report

Current level of influenza activity: Low
Trend: Decreasing
News: Influenza is still circulating. COVID-19 cases have decreased in recent weeks. RSV activity in children under 5 years has decreased to low intensity levels.

For the latest annual influenza and acute respiratory infections in Wales reports see: Annual influenza surveillance and influenza vaccination uptake reports
 

Weekly surveillance reports

Latest report: Public Health Wales Influenza Surveillance Report: Week 8 2024 

Latest vaccination coverage data: Public Health Wales Influenza Vaccination Coverage Downloadable Data

 

Key points

 

In Wales:

Flu activity surveillance update

  • The GP consultation rate for influenza in Wales during week 8 reported through the GP Sentinel Surveillance of Infections Scheme was 7.5 consultations per 100,000 practice population.
  • The rate decreased compared to week 7 (7.9 consultations per 100,000).

Virological surveillance update 

  • 185 surveillance samples from patients with ILI symptoms collected by sentinel GPs and community pharmacies during Week 8. Of the 185 samples, 24 tested positive for influenza A (13 influenza A(H1N1), 10 influenza A(H3), and one influenza A(not subtyped)), 21 seasonal coronaviruses, 16 mycoplasma, 11 human metapneumovirus, nine rhinovirus, nine parainfluenza, seven influenza B, five SARS-CoV-2, three enterovirus, three bocavirus, two RSV and two adenovirus (as at 28/02/2024).
  • During week 8, 1,321 hospital and non-sentinel GP patient samples underwent full respiratory screen multiplex testing by Public Health Wales Microbiology, of which, 99 were positive for influenza. A number of other causes of acute respiratory infection were identified (see full report). These tests are usually prioritised for symptomatic patients in hospitals, or less commonly community settings.
  • Confirmed RSV case incidence in children aged under 5 decreased in the most recent week and remains at low intensity levels.

Hospitalisations in confirmed cases of influenza and RSV

  • The 7-day rolling sums of cases hospitalised within 28 days of an influenza or RSV positive test result in the community (or up to two days post-admission) were 56 and 7 respectively during Week 8, and 29 for SARS-CoV-2 during week 8.
  • For further information see the Public Health Wales Dashboard on hospital admissions in ARI cases

 

In the UK and Europe
  • As of week 7, influenza consultations decreased to 7.6 per 100,000 in England and were 8.9 per 100,000 in Scotland in week 6 (latest data available). UK summary data is available from the UKHSA Influenza and COVID-19 Surveillance Report.
  • The WHO and the European Respiratory Virus Surveillance Summary (ERVISS) reported that influenza positivity remains elevated above the 10% positivity epidemic threshold.
  • For more information on European level influenza surveillance see  European Respiratory Virus Surveillance Summary (ERVISS)
World Overview
  • The WHO reported on 21/02/2024, based on data up to 04/02/2024 that globally, influenza detections remained elevated in most Northern hemisphere countries, although global influenza virus detections decreased.
  • See full WHO influenza update
     
COVID-19
 
MERS-CoV and H7N9 Updates
  • On the 10/07/2023 WHO were notified by the United Arab Emirates(UAE) of a case of MERS-CoV. In total, 2,605 laboratory-confirmed cases of locally acquired Middle East Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) worldwide, including 936 deaths
  • The latest WHO Influenza at Human-Animal Interface summary (08/04/2022 to 13/05/2022) reports that there have been no publicly available records from China or other countries on avian influenza A(H7N9) in recent months. Since February 2013, a total of 1,568 laboratory-confirmed cases of human infection with avian influenza A(H7N9), including at least 616 deaths, have been reported.
  • Updates are available from WHO Global Alert and Response
  • Latest WHO Influenza Monthly Risk Assessment Summary
  • Public Health Wales has published advice to health professionals which is available at MERS-CoV and Influenza H7N9 infection control preparedness
     

Weekly Influenza Surveillance Reports for Wales

Reports Archive