[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background:
Influenza-associated illness results in increased morbidity and mortality in the Americas. These effects can be mitigated with an appropriately chosen and timed influenza vaccination campaign. To provide guidance in choosing the most suitable vaccine formulation and timing of administration, it is necessary to understand the timing of influenza seasonal epidemics.
Our main objective was to determine if influenza occurs in seasonal patterns in the American tropics, and when these patterns occurred.
Publicly available, monthly seasonal influenza data from the Pan American Health Organization and WHO, from countries in the American tropics were obtained during 2002-2008 and 2011-2014 (excluding unseasonal pandemic activity during 2009-2010). For each country, we calculated the monthly proportion of samples that tested positive for influenza. We applied the monthly proportion data to a logistic regression model for each country.
We analyzed 2002-2008 and 2011-2014 influenza surveillance data from the American tropics and identified 13 (81%) of 16 countries with influenza epidemics that, on average, started during May and lasted 4 months.
The majority of countries in the American tropics have seasonal epidemics that start in May. Officials in these countries should consider the impact of vaccinating persons during April with the Southern Hemisphere formulation. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
Full-text · Article · Dec 2015 · Influenza and Other Respiratory Viruses
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background:
Influenza disease is a vaccine-preventable cause of morbidity and mortality. The Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) region has invested in influenza vaccines, but few estimates of influenza burden exist to justify these investments. We estimated influenza-associated deaths for 35 PAHO countries during 2002-2008.
Annually, PAHO countries report registered deaths. We used respiratory and circulatory (R&C) codes from seven countries with distinct influenza seasonality and high-quality mortality data to estimate influenza-associated mortality rates by age group (0-64, 65-74, and ≥75 years) with a Serfling regression model or a negative binomial model. We calculated the percent of all R&C deaths attributable to influenza by age group in these countries (etiologic fraction) and applied it to the age-specific mortality in 13 countries with good mortality data but poorly defined seasonality. Lastly, we grouped the remaining 15 countries into WHO mortality strata and applied the age and mortality stratum-specific rate of influenza mortality calculated from the 20 countries. We summed each country's estimate to arrive at an average total annual number and rate of influenza deaths in the Americas.
For the 35 PAHO countries, we estimated an annual mean influenza-associated mortality rate of 2·1/100 000 among <65-year olds, 31·9/100 000 among those 65-74 years, and 161·8/100 000 among those ≥75 years. We estimated that annually between 40 880 and 160 270 persons (mean, 85 100) die of influenza illness in the PAHO region.
Influenza remains an important cause of mortality in the Americas.
Preview · Article · Aug 2015 · Influenza and Other Respiratory Viruses
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Little is known about factors associated with maintenance of hemagglutinin inhibition (HAI) antibodies after influenza vaccination in older adults.
Adults ≥50 years of age were vaccinated prior to the 2009-10 influenza season. Serum was drawn pre-vaccination (S1), 21-28 days post-vaccination (S2), and after the influenza season (S3) for HAI assays. Seroconversion was defined as ≥ 4-fold increase S1 to S2 or if S1 < 10 by an S2 ≥ 40) and seroprotection was defined as S2 ≥ 40. Maintenance of antibody response was measured in participants with an S2 ≥ 40, and defined as an S3 ≥ 40.
We enrolled 510 participants during Fall 2009 at Vanderbilt University Medical Center and Marshfield Clinic Research Foundation. Participants' mean age was 64 years with 62% female and 96% white. Seroconversion and seroprotection rates were lowest for influenza A H1N1 (12% and 26%, respectively), highest for influenza A H3N2 (45% and 82%), and intermediate for influenza B (28% and 72%). Of the participants with an S2 ≥ 40, 36% (46/126), 71% (289/407), and 74% (263/354) maintained an S3 ≥ 40 for H1N1, H3N2, and B influenza vaccine strains, respectively. S1 HAI titer was strongly associated with both post-vaccination seroprotection and maintaining seroprotection at S3 for all three influenza antigens. Age, sex, body mass index, self-reported stress, and vaccination site were not consistently associated with vaccine response or maintenance of response.
Pre-vaccination antibody titer was the only study variable consistently and positively associated with both serologic response to vaccination and maintenance of response. Antibody responses were lowest for the H1N1 vaccine strain. CLINICALTRIALS: gov Identifier: NCT02401893.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Infectious diseases in poultry can spread quickly and lead to huge economic losses. In the past decade, on multiple continents, the accelerated spread of highly pathogenic avian Influenza A (H5N1) virus, often through informal trade networks, has led to the death and culling of hundreds of millions of poultry. Endemic poultry diseases like Newcastle disease and fowl typhoid can also be devastating in many parts of the world. Understanding trade networks in unregulated systems can inform policy decisions concerning disease prevention and containment.
No preview · Article · Apr 2015 · Preventive Veterinary Medicine
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Influenza is the most common vaccine-preventable disease in the United States; however, little is known about the burden of critical illness due to influenza virus infection. Our primary objective was to estimate the proportion of all critical illness hospitalizations that are attributable to seasonal influenza.
Full-text · Article · Aug 2014 · Critical Care Medicine
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Young children are at increased risk of severe outcomes from influenza illness, including hospitalization. We conducted a case-control study to identify risk factors for influenza-associated hospitalizations among children in U.S. Emerging Infections Program sites.
Cases were children 6-59 months of age hospitalized for laboratory-confirmed influenza infections during 2005-08. Age- and zip-code-matched controls were enrolled. Data on child, caregiver, and household characteristics were collected from parents and medical records. Conditional logistic regression was used to identify independent risk factors for hospitalization.
We enrolled 290 (64%) of 454 eligible cases and 1,089 (49%) of 2,204 eligible controls. Risk for influenza hospitalization increased with maternal age <26 years (odds ratio [OR] 1.8, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.1-2.9); household income below the poverty threshold (OR 2.2, CI 1.4-3.6); smoking by >50% of household members (OR 2.9, CI 1.4-6.6); lack of household influenza vaccination (OR 1.8, CI 1.2-2.5); and presence of chronic illnesses, including hematologic/oncologic (OR 11.8, CI 4.5-31.0), pulmonary (OR 2.9, CI 1.9-4.4), and neurologic (OR 3.8, CI 1.6-9.2) conditions. Full influenza immunization decreased the risk among children aged 6-23 months (OR 0.5, CI 0.3-0.9) but not among those 24-59 months of age (OR 1.5, CI 0.8-3.0; p-value for difference = 0.01).
Chronic illnesses, young maternal age, poverty, household smoking, and lack of household influenza vaccination increased the risk of influenza hospitalization. These characteristics may help providers to identify young children who are at greatest risk for severe outcomes from influenza illness.
Full-text · Article · Mar 2014 · The Pediatric Infectious Disease Journal
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Historically, American Indian/Alaska Native (AI/AN) people have experienced a disproportionate burden of infectious disease morbidity compared with the general US population. We evaluated whether a disparity in influenza hospitalizations exists between AI/AN people and the general US population.
We used Indian Health Service hospital discharge data (2001-2011) for AI/AN people and 13 State Inpatient Databases (2001-2008) to provide a comparison to the US population. Hospitalization rates were calculated by respiratory year (July-June). Influenza-specific hospitalizations were defined as discharges with any influenza diagnoses. Influenza-associated hospitalizations were calculated using negative binomial regression models that incorporated hospitalization and influenza laboratory surveillance data.
The mean influenza-specific hospitalization rate/100 000 persons/year during the 2001-2002 to 2007-2008 respiratory years was 18.6 for AI/AN people and 15.6 for the comparison US population. The age-adjusted influenza-associated hospitalization rate for AI/AN people (98.2; 95% confidence interval [CI], 51.6-317.8) was similar to the comparison US population (58.2; CI, 34.7-172.2). By age, influenza-associated hospitalization rates were significantly higher among AI/AN infants (<1 year) (1070.7; CI, 640.7-2969.5) than the comparison US infant population (210.2; CI, 153.5-478.5).
American Indian/Alaska Native people had higher influenza-specific hospitalization rates than the comparison US population; a significant influenza-associated hospitalization rate disparity was detected only among AI/AN infants because of the wide CIs inherent to the model. Taken together, the influenza-specific and influenza-associated hospitalization rates suggest that AI/AN people might suffer disproportionately from influenza illness compared with the general US population.
Full-text · Article · Mar 2014 · Open Forum Infectious Diseases
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Re-emergence in 2003 of human cases of avian H5N1 and the resultant spread of the disease highlighted the need to improve the capacity of countries to detect and contain novel viruses. To assess development in this capacity, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) produced a tool for assessing a country's capability in 12 critical areas related to pandemic preparedness, including monitoring and identifying novel influenza viruses.
Capabilities the CDC tool assesses range from how well a country has planned and is prepared for an outbreak to how prepared a country is to respond when a pandemic occurs. Included in this assessment tool are questions to determine whether a country has a detailed preparedness plan and the laboratory capacity to identify various strains of influenza quickly and accurately.
The tool was used first in 2008 when 40 countries in collaboration with CDC calculated baseline scores and used a second time in 2010 by 36 of the original 40 countries to determine whether they had improved their preparedness. Using basic mathematical comparison and statistical analyses, we compared data at the aggregate capability level as well as at the indicator and country levels. Additionally, we examined the comments of respondents to the assessment questionnaire for reasons (positive and negative) that would explain changes in scores from 2008 to 2010.
Analysis of results of two assessments in 36 countries shows statistically significant improvement in all 12 capabilities on an aggregate level and 47 of 50 indicators.
Full-text · Article · Dec 2013 · Influenza and Other Respiratory Viruses
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Limited data are available from Central and Eastern Europe on risk factors for severe complications of influenza. Such data are essential to prioritize prevention and treatment resources and to adapt influenza vaccination recommendations.
To use sentinel surveillance data to identify risk factors for fatal outcomes among hospitalized patients with severe acute respiratory infections (SARI) and among hospitalized patients with laboratory-confirmed influenza.
Retrospective analysis of case-based surveillance data collected from sentinel hospitals in Romania during the 2009/2010 and 2010/2011 winter influenza seasons was performed to evaluate risk factors for fatal outcomes using multivariate logistic regression.
During 2009/2010 and 2010/2011, sentinel hospitals reported 661 SARI patients of which 230 (35%) tested positive for influenza. In the multivariate analyses, infection with influenza A(H1N1)pdm09 was the strongest risk factor for death among hospitalized SARI patients (OR: 6·6; 95% CI: 3·3-13·1). Among patients positive for influenza A(H1N1)pdm09 virus infection (n = 148), being pregnant (OR: 7·1; 95% CI: 1·6-31·2), clinically obese (OR: 2·9;95% CI: 1·6-31·2), and having an immunocompromising condition (OR: 3·7;95% CI: 1·1-13·4) were significantly associated with fatal outcomes.
These findings are consistent with several other investigations of risk factors associated with influenza A(H1N1)pdm09 virus infections. They also support the more recent 2012 recommendations by the WHO Strategic Advisory Group of Experts on Immunization (SAGE) that pregnant women are an important risk group for influenza vaccination. Ongoing sentinel surveillance can be useful tool to monitor risk factors for complications of influenza virus infections during each influenza season, and pandemics as well.
Full-text · Article · Nov 2013 · Influenza and Other Respiratory Viruses
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background:
Each year, the US Influenza Vaccine Effectiveness Network examines the effectiveness of influenza vaccines in preventing medically attended acute respiratory illnesses caused by influenza.
Patients with acute respiratory illnesses of ≤ 7 days' duration were enrolled at ambulatory care facilities in 5 communities. Specimens were collected and tested for influenza by real-time reverse-transcriptase polymerase chain reaction. Receipt of influenza vaccine was defined based on documented evidence of vaccination in medical records or immunization registries. Vaccine effectiveness was estimated in adjusted logistic regression models by comparing the vaccination coverage in those who tested positive for influenza with those who tested negative.
The 2011-2012 season was mild and peaked late, with circulation of both type A viruses and both lineages of type B. Overall adjusted vaccine effectiveness was 47% (95% confidence interval [CI], 36-56) in preventing medically attended influenza; vaccine effectiveness was 65% (95% CI, 44-79) against type A (H1N1) pdm09 but only 39% (95% CI, 23-52) against type A (H3N2). Estimates of vaccine effectiveness against both type B lineages were similar (overall, 58%; 95% CI, 35-73). An apparent negative effect of prior year vaccination on current year effectiveness estimates was noted, particularly for A (H3N2) outcomes.
Vaccine effectiveness in the 2011-2012 season was modest overall, with lower effectiveness against the predominant A (H3N2) virus. This may be related to antigenic drift, but past history of vaccination might also play a role.
No preview · Article · Nov 2013 · Clinical Infectious Diseases
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: During 2009–2010, we examined 217 patients hospitalized with laboratory-confirmed pandemic influenza in 9 Influenza Hospitalization
Surveillance Network sites and 413 age- and community-matched controls and found that a single dose of monovalent nonadjuvanted
influenza A(H1N1)pdm09 vaccine was 50% (95% confidence interval, 13%–71%) effective in preventing hospitalization associated
with A(H1N1)pdm09 virus infection.
Full-text · Article · Aug 2013 · Clinical Infectious Diseases
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Rationale: The incidence of influenza-associated acute respiratory failure is unknown. Objectives: We conducted this study to estimate the population-based incidence of influenza-associated acute respiratory failure hospitalizations. Methods: This is a cohort study from January 2003 through March 2009 using hospitalization databases for Arizona, California, and Washington from the Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project and influenza surveillance data for regions encompassing these states. Acute respiratory failure requiring mechanical ventilation was defined by ICD-9-CM code. We used negative-binomial regression modeling to estimate the incidence of influenza-associated events. Measurements and Main Results: The incidence of influenza-associated acute respiratory failure was 2.7 per 100,000 person-years (95% CI 0.2, 23.5), and during the influenza season, 3.8% of all respiratory failure hospitalizations were attributable to influenza. Compared with adults aged 18-49 years, the incidence rate ratio (IRR) for influenza-associated acute respiratory failure was lower among children aged 1-4 years (0.9) and 5-17 years (0.3). However, the IRR was higher among adults aged 50-64 years (4.8), 65-74 years (10.4), 75-84 years (19.9), and 85 years and older (33.7). Results were similar with more sensitive and specific outcome definitions and in a sensitivity analysis using only Arizona-specific outcome and surveillance data. Conclusion: Our data indicate that influenza was an important contributor to respiratory failure hospitalizations during 2003-2009. Physicians should consider influenza testing and empiric antiviral therapy for hospitalized patients with severe acute respiratory disease during periods of influenza activity. Influenza has a greater effect on respiratory failure in the elderly, for whom better prevention measures are needed.
Full-text · Article · Jul 2013 · American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To determine trends in mortality from respiratory disease in several areas of Latin America between 1998 and 2009.
The numbers of deaths attributed to respiratory disease between 1998 and 2009 were extracted from mortality data from Argentina, southern Brazil, Chile, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Mexico and Paraguay. Robust linear models were then fitted to the rates of mortality from respiratory disease recorded between 2003 and 2009.
Between 1998 and 2008, rates of mortality from respiratory disease gradually decreased in all age groups in most of the study areas. Among children younger than 5 years, for example, the annual rates of such mortality - across all seven study areas - fell from 56.9 deaths per 100 000 in 1998 to 26.6 deaths per 100 000 in 2008. Over this period, rates of mortality from respiratory disease were generally highest among adults older than 65 years and lowest among individuals aged 5 to 49 years. In 2009, mortality from respiratory disease was either similar to that recorded in 2008 or showed an increase - significant increases were seen among children younger than 5 years in Paraguay, among those aged 5 to 49 years in southern Brazil, Mexico and Paraguay and among adults aged 50 to 64 years in Mexico and Paraguay.
In much of Latin America, mortality from respiratory disease gradually fell between 1998 and 2008. However, this downward trend came to a halt in 2009, probably as a result of the (H1N1) 2009 pandemic.
Preview · Article · Jul 2013 · Bulletin of the World Health Organisation
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The goal of influenza vaccination programs is to reduce influenza-associated disease outcomes. Therefore, estimating the reduced burden of influenza as a result of vaccination over time and by age group would allow for a clear understanding of the value of influenza vaccines in the US, and of areas where improvements could lead to greatest benefits.
To estimate the direct effect of influenza vaccination in the US in terms of averted number of cases, medically-attended cases, and hospitalizations over six recent influenza seasons.
Using existing surveillance data, we present a method for assessing the impact of influenza vaccination where impact is defined as either the number of averted outcomes or as the prevented disease fraction (the number of cases estimated to have been averted relative to the number of cases that would have occurred in the absence of vaccination).
We estimated that during our 6-year study period, the number of influenza illnesses averted by vaccination ranged from a low of approximately 1.1 million (95% confidence interval (CI) 0.6-1.7 million) during the 2006-2007 season to a high of 5 million (CI 2.9-8.6 million) during the 2010-2011 season while the number of averted hospitalizations ranged from a low of 7,700 (CI 3,700-14,100) in 2009-2010 to a high of 40,400 (CI 20,800-73,000) in 2010-2011. Prevented fractions varied across age groups and over time. The highest prevented fraction in the study period was observed in 2010-2011, reflecting the post-pandemic expansion of vaccination coverage.
Influenza vaccination programs in the US produce a substantial health benefit in terms of averted cases, clinic visits and hospitalizations. Our results underscore the potential for additional disease prevention through increased vaccination coverage, particularly among nonelderly adults, and increased vaccine effectiveness, particularly among the elderly.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Age distribution of hospitalized caseswith and without chronic medical conditions, the 2010–2011 winter season. Bar labels denote percent of hospitalized cases with chronic medical conditions in each age group.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Influenza A (H1N1)pdm09 (2009 H1N1) re-circulated as the predominant virus from January through February 2011 in China. National surveillance of 2009 H1N1 as a notifiable disease was maintained to monitor potential changes in disease severity from the previous season.
To describe the characteristics of hospitalized cases with 2009 H1N1 infection and analyze risk factors for severe illness during the 2010-2011winter season in China, we obtained surveillance data from hospitalized cases with 2009 H1N1 infection from November 2010 through May 2011, and reviewed medical records from 701 hospitalized cases. Age-standardized risk ratios were used to compare the age distribution of patients that were hospitalized and died due to 2009 H1N1 between the 2010-2011winter season to those during the 2009-2010 pandemic period. During the 2010-2011 winter season, children less than 5 years of age had the highest relative risk of hospitalization and death, followed by adults aged 65 years or older. Additionally, the relative risk of hospitalized cases aged 5-14 and 15-24 years was lower compared to children less than 5 years of age. During the winter season of 2010-2011, the proportions of adults aged 25 years or older for hospitalization and death were significantly higher than those during the 2009-2010 pandemic period. Being male, having a chronic medical condition, delayed hospital admission (≥3 days from onset) or delayed initiation of antiviral treatment (≥5 days from onset) were associated with severe illness among non-pregnant patients ≥2 years of age.
We observed a change in high risk groups for hospitalization for 2009 H1N1 during the winter months immediately following the pandemic period compared to the high risk groups identified during the pandemic period. Our nationally notifiable disease surveillance system enabled us to understand the evolving epidemiology of 2009 H1N1 infection after the pandemic period.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background:
We estimated rates of influenza-associated deaths and hospitalizations in Argentina, a country that recommends annual influenza vaccination for persons at high risk of complications from influenza illness.
We identified hospitalized persons and deaths in persons diagnosed with pneumonia and influenza (P&I, ICD-10 codes J10-J18) and respiratory and circulatory illness (R&C, codes I00-I99 and J00-J99). We defined the influenza season as the months when the proportion of samples that tested positive for influenza exceeded the annual median. We used hospitalizations and deaths during the influenza off-season to estimate, using linear regression, the number of excess deaths that occurred during the influenza season. To explore whether excess mortality varied by sex and whether people were age <65 or ≥ 65 years, we used Poisson regression of the influenza-associated rates.
During 2002-2009, 2411 P&I and 8527 R&C mean excess deaths occurred annually from May to October. If all of these excess deaths were associated with influenza, the influenza-associated mortality rate was 6/100,000 person-years (95% CI 4-8/100,000 person-years for P&I and 21/100,000 person-years (95% CI 12-31/100,000 person-years) for R&C. During 2005-2008, we identified an average of 7868 P&I excess hospitalizations and 22,994 R&C hospitalizations per year, resulting in an influenza-associated hospitalization rate of 2/10,000 person-years (95% CI 1-3/10,000 person-years) for P&I and 6/10,000 person-years (95% CI 3-8/10,000 person-years) for R&C.
Our findings suggest that annual rates of influenza-associated hospitalizations and death in Argentina were substantial and similar to neighboring Brazil.
Full-text · Article · Dec 2012 · Influenza and Other Respiratory Viruses