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Current Trends Influenza Update -- United States

During the week ending March 19, 1982, 6 states reported their first influenza virus isolates of the season; in Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska, and Virginia influenza B viruses were recovered in early March from children or young adults with sporadic illnesses, and in Pennsylvania and Washington influenza A(H1N1) viruses were isolated from a 3-year-old and from a 50-year-old in late February and early March, respectively. In Tucson, Arizona, where influenza B virus had caused some school outbreaks in January (1), a school outbreak caused by influenza A(H1N1) virus occurred in mid-March. During the 1981-1982 season, a total of 9 states have reported influenza A(H1N1) and influenza B virus isolates, 20 states have reported only influenza B virus isolates, and 3 states have reported only influenza A(H1N1) virus isolates. The overall level of influenza activity for the nation remains low compared with recent years.

Increased spread of influenza virus to previously unaffected communities, however, documented in recent weeks by virus isolation and morbidity reports, has now been accompanied by the first report of influenza-associated mortality in a nursing home outbreak. From the last week of February to the middle of March approximately 38 cases of influenza-like illness occurred among 116 elderly residents of a home in Cobb County, Georgia, with the peak of new cases occurring on March 10. Six influenza B viruses have been isolated thus far from specimens collected on March 12 from 11 residents and 1 staff member. During the period of the outbreak, 6 patients with influenza-like illness died. Investigations of vaccine efficacy in this nursing home and in a nursing home in Missouri (2) are in progress. Reported by Y Wong, PhD, WJ Hausler, PhD, L Wintermeyer, MD, State Epidemiologist, Iowa State Dept Health; R Siem, PhD, AD Dean, MD, State Epidemiologist, Minnesota State Dept of Health; J Blosser, P Stoesz, MD, State Epidemiologist, Nebraska State Dept of Health; J Sarandria, Allegheny County Health Dept Laboratory, Pittsburgh, EJ Witte, DVM, State Epidemiologist, Pennsylvania State Dept of Health; S Mills, J Allard, PhD, State Epidemiologist, Washington State Dept of Social and Health Svcs; H Krebs, RN, Cobb County Health Dept, M Johnson, RN, T Munro, MS, J Buehler, MD, RK Sikes, DVM, State Epidemiologist, Georgia Dept of Human Resources; R Worrell, RN, P Noland, MD, Pima County Health Dept, L Minnich, MS, G Ray, MD, University Hospital, Tucson, J Sacks, MD, Acting State Epidemiologist, Arizona Dept of Health Svcs; FG Hayden, MD, University of Virginia Medical Center, GB Miller, Jr, MD, State Epidemiologist, Virginia State Dept of Health; Influenza Br, Center for Infectious Diseases, CDC.


  1. CDC. Influenza update--United States. MMWR 1982;31:41.

  2. CDC. Influenza update--United States. MMWR 1982;31:131.

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