The Flu: No, I haven’t seen any either…

From the CDC:

During week 51 (December 14-20, 2008), a low level of influenza activity was reported in the United States.

  • One hundred three (3.4%) specimens tested by U.S. World Health Organization (WHO) and National Respiratory and Enteric Virus Surveillance System (NREVSS) collaborating laboratories and reported to CDC/Influenza Division were positive for influenza.
  • The proportion of deaths attributed to pneumonia and influenza (P&I) was below the epidemic threshold.
  • The proportion of outpatient visits for influenza-like illness (ILI) was below national and region-specific baseline levels.
  • Two states reported regional activity; six states reported local influenza activity; Puerto Rico and 36 states reported sporadic influenza activity; five states reported no influenza activity; and the District of Columbia and one state did not report.

In case you wondered what that looks like, in graph form:

Flu2008 160 cases, Nationwide, week 50.  Lucky so far.


  1. Is it possible that people with the flu are simply not going to the doctor? I know here in the Philadelphia area, a rampant 48 hour flu bug went around (my entire family got it, including my boyfriend and myself), but only my grandfather was taken to the doctor. The rest of us laid up in bed and rode it out, felt like death, but eventually it ended. Several other nurses got the same bug (and most of us got the flu shot this year), and they didn’t go to the doc either.

    Just wondering. :)

    Overall, glad the flu seems to be down!!!

    Take care,
    Carrie :)

  2. What qualifies as an epidemic? Because 2/3s of my office was out 3+ days the beginning of December. But I attribute that to sheer stupidity and presenteeism.

  3. I haven’t seen any yet either.

  4. Goatwhacker says:

    Some mild flu-like stuff but no true influenza around here.

  5. There was one shift last year where I got 7 positive flu swabs IN A ROW (after four of my patients tested positive, I started doing everyone else’s swabs too to see how long my streak would go). I’ve seen no positives yet this year either.

  6. Now I know people are not always the smartest however, is it possible that people are staying home when they get sick and not sharing the bug like before?

  7. Most of the time, unless you work for the CDC, it makes no sense to test for the flu. When it might make sense is when you have a LOT of people coming in with a similar illness, especially when the severely affected ones need hospitalization. Most of the time, there is only conjecture about the flu and no differentiation from other viral illnesses. Something that lasts 24-48h is probably not the flu.

  8. TuneDoctor says:

    I am in Dallas – We have had 4 or 5 positive swabs in the lat 2 weeks for Flu B…

    And so it begins…


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