MMWR News Synopsis for October 2, 2014

No MMWR telebriefing scheduled for
October 2, 2014

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Full MMWR articles

Increases in Heroin Overdose Deaths — 28 States, 2010–2012

CDC Media Relations

Reducing inappropriate opioid prescribing remains a crucial public health strategy to address both prescription opioid and heroin overdoses. A new CDC study of 28 states found that heroin overdose death rates increased in most of the states, while prescription opioid-related overdose death rates increased in some states and decreased in others. Even so, more than twice as many people died from prescription opioid overdoses than from heroin. Widespread abuse of prescription opioids is fueling both the nearly 17,000 annual prescription opioid deaths nationally and the troubling growth in heroin use. Reducing inappropriate opioid prescribing remains a crucial public health strategy to address both prescription opioid and heroin overdoses.

Update: Influenza Activity — United States and Worldwide, May 18–September 20, 2014

CDC Media Relations

CDC recommends yearly flu vaccination for all people 6 months of age and older without contraindications. Flu vaccination can begin as soon as flu vaccine is available in your community. While a yearly flu vaccination is the best method for preventing the flu, flu antiviral medications – when prescribed by a doctor — can treat flu illness. Flu antiviral drugs can lessen symptoms and help prevent more serious illnesses that could result in hospital stays. Antiviral drugs for influenza work best when started within two days of getting sick. The United States experienced low levels of influenza activity from May 18 to September 20, 2014; and influenza A (H1N1)pdm09, influenza A (H3N2), and influenza B viruses were detected worldwide and identified sporadically in the United States. Typical seasonal patterns of influenza activity occurred in the Southern Hemisphere. It is not possible to predict which influenza virus will predominate or how severe influenza-related disease activity will be during 2014–15 influenza season.

Typhoid Fever Surveillance and Vaccine Use — South-East Asia and Western Pacific Regions, 2009–2013

CDC Media Relations

Among a publicly insured Michigan Medicaid cohort, overall vaccination percentages with tetanus, diphtheria and acellular pertussis (Tdap) were low for all pregnant women. Black, Asian, and Arab women were less likely to receive a Tdap vaccine compared to white women. Vaccinating pregnant women with tetanus, diphtheria and acellular pertussis (Tdap) is an important strategy for providing passive immunity to infants, who are at highest risk of mortality and morbidity from pertussis. In 2011, the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) first recommended the routine administration of Tdap during pregnancy. Using Michigan Medicaid administrative claims data and statewide immunization information system data, this is the first study to examine Tdap vaccination among a publicly-insured cohort of pregnant women. Results indicated that only 14.3% of women received Tdap during pregnancy, with rates highest among whites and lowest among Arab women. Ensuring that all infants receive the protection against pertussis afforded by maternal vaccination will require enhanced efforts, including increased education of health care providers, parents, and families.



Page last reviewed: October 2, 2014