Nov. 29, 2022 — Reports of respiratory illnesses continued to rise as the 2022-23 flu season maintained its early surge through mid-November, according to the CDC.
Nationally, 6% of all outpatient visits were due to influenza or ILI for the week of Nov. 13-19, up from 5.8% the previous week, the CDC’s Influenza Division said. in his FluView weekly report.
These numbers are the highest recorded in November since 2009, but the peak of the 2009-10 flu season came even earlier – the week of October 18-24 – and the rate of flu-like illnesses had already dropped to just over 4.0% from November 15 to 21 that year and continued to decline thereafter.
Although COVID-19 and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) are included in data from the CDC’s Influenza-Related Diseases Surveillance Network, the agency noted that “seasonal influenza activity is elevated across the country. and estimated that “there were at least 6.2 million illnesses, 53,000 hospitalizations and 2,900 deaths from influenza” in the 2022-23 season.
The total number of influenza deaths includes 11 reported cases in children as of November 19, and children aged 0 to 4 had a higher proportion of visits for ILI than other age groups.
The agency also said the cumulative hospitalization rate of 11.3 per 100,000 population “is higher than the rate seen in [the corresponding week of] each previous season since 2010-11. Adults 65 and older have the highest cumulative rate, 25.9 per 100,000, for this year, compared with 20.7 for children 0 to 4; 11.1 for adults aged 50 to 64; 10.3 for children aged 5 to 17; and 5.6 for adults 18 to 49, the CDC said.