Updated Florida influenza report

Published: Nov. 21, 2019 at 7:16 AM EST
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By: Ryan Kaufman | WCTV Eyewitness News UPDATE: February 28, 2020

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) - Week eight of the Florida Department of Health's "Flu Review" is once again showing a "decreasing" trend in influenza like illnesses. The only difference this time, is that the number of cases being reported has fallen below the reported levels back to the 2016-17 season.

The FDH is also reporting no new pediatric influenza- associated deaths for week eight. The total number of pediatric influenza- associated deaths stands at nine for the 2019-2020 season.

The predominant strain is still listed as Type A 2009 (H1N1). This strain of influenza was also nicknamed "Swine Flu" during the 2009 nationwide influenza outbreak. Type A 2009 overtook influenza B Victoria lineage in week three as the most common strain.

Week three was the time period between 1/12/20 and 1/18/20.

According the county-by-county breakdown of activity, Suwannee county was the only one in WCTV's viewing area showing "moderate" influenza activity. In total, 11 counties in the State of Florida are also reporting this type of activity.

All other counties within WCTV's viewing area are showing as "mild activity", with the exception of Hamilton county with "no activity."

In the latest "statewide activity" graph, FDH shows the flu season started at week 40 of 2019 with "sporadic" reportings of influenza activity. By week 46, the graph jumped over "local" activity and went to "regional" activity. Since the 2016-17 season, this type of jump hasn't been reported. Around week 50, influenza activity advanced to "widespread" activity and has remained there since.

For reference, the categories are as listed: Sporadic, Local, Regional, and Widespread.

A chart within the review shows influenza like illnesses (ILI) reported from doctors across Florida is now below previous seasons. This is encouraging news as levels are now on par with the beginning of the season (around week 44-48).

The county-by-county trend (map is below) shows 10 counties as "increasing" when it comes to recently reported cases. This number continues to drop from the last two weeks. The only county in WCTV's viewing area listed as "increasing" is Wakulla county.

Hamilton, Suwannee and Lafayette counties are shown as "plateau". This means the season is predicted to be at its peak. All other counties are listed as "decreasing."

As always, the CDC recommends getting the flu shot while you can to help prevent contracting the flu.

For more information on this report, click the link in the “related documents” section at the top of this page.

WCTV's Florida viewing area is defined as: Franklin, Gadsden, Hamilton, Jefferson, Lafayette, Leon, Madison, Suwannee, Taylor, and Wakulla counties.

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