For the Region as a whole influenza activity started to increase in week 49/2021, with different levels of activity observed between the countries and areas of the Region, and a general dominance of A(H3) viruses though some countries reported both A(H3) and A(H1)pdm09 viruses, e.g. France.
- To date this season, the highest percentage positivity of influenza viruses in sentinel primary care specimens from patients presenting with ILI or ARI symptoms was 20% in week 52/2021.
During the influenza Vaccine Composition Meeting for the southern hemisphere 2022 season, held in September 2021, WHO recommended updating of the A(H3N2) and the B/Victoria-lineage components. The full report can be found here.
Vaccination remains the best protective measure for prevention of influenza. With increased circulation of influenza virus clinicians should consider early antiviral treatment of patients in at-risk groups with influenza virus infection, according to local guidance, to prevent severe outcomes. Viruses analyzed so far have remained susceptible to neuraminidase inhibitors and baloxavir marboxil.
For information about the SARS-CoV-2 situation in the WHO European Region visit:
- WHO website: https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019
- ECDC website: https://www.ecdc.europa.eu/en/novel-coronavirus-china
For the European Region, influenza virus positivity in sentinel primary care specimens was 6% and has fallen below the Regional epidemic threshold, which is set at 10%.
Week 2/2022 overall pooled EuroMOMO estimates of all-cause mortality for the participating European countries showed a substantially elevated level of excess mortality over the last month. The excess was observed mainly among older adults (65 years or older), but also among those aged 45 to 64 years of age. Data from 26 European countries or subnational regions were included in this pooled analysis of all-cause mortality. The full EuroMOMO report can be found here: https://www.euromomo.eu/.