MMWR News Synopsis for September 22, 2016


Falls and Fall Injuries Among Adults Aged ≥65 Years — United States, 2014

Even though older-adult falls are common, clinicians can help prevent them by screening patients 65 and older for fall risk; reviewing and managing patient medications linked to falls; and recommending vitamin D supplements for improved bone, muscle, and nerve health. Every second of every day in the U.S., an older adult falls. These falls can result in death, serious injury, and loss of independence. Although falls are common, more than half of people 65 and older who fall do not discuss the fall with their clinician. Older-adult falls are preventable.

HIV Testing Experience before HIV Diagnosis Among Men Who Have Sex with Men — 21 Jurisdictions, United States, 2007–2013

Although there is evidence of increased HIV testing among men who have sex with men (MSM), there is still a need to promote annual HIV testing, particularly among subgroups at high risk. As many MSM are acquiring HIV despite increased HIV testing, enhanced HIV testing efforts should work in conjunction with biomedical prevention interventions such as pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP), which has been shown to substantially reduce HIV infection among people at high risk for acquiring HIV infection. CDC has recommended that sexually active MSM be tested at least annually for HIV to foster early detection of HIV infection and to link those infected to clinical and prevention services to improve health outcomes and prevent HIV transmission. Data from the National HIV Surveillance System were used to assess trends in previous HIV testing experience among MSM with HIV infection diagnosed during 2007-2013. The results suggest that more MSM with HIV diagnosed in the jurisdictions included in the analysis might be getting tested annually, as indicated by the increasing percentage of MSM who had a negative HIV test in the 12 months before diagnosis: from 48% in 2007 to 56% in 2013 among MSM with a previous HIV-negative test.

Unmet Needs for Ancillary Services Among Men Who Have Sex with Men and Who Are Receiving HIV Medical Care — United States, 2013–2014

Nationally, among men who have sex with men (MSM) receiving outpatient HIV medical care, there were substantial unmet needs for ancillary services in 2013-2014. The most prevalent unmet needs were for services that support retention in HIV medical care and assist with day-to-day living. These needed services include dental and vision care as well as food and nutrition services and peer group support. Ancillary services – such as non-HIV medical care, subsistence services, and HIV support services – can improve the health of people living with HIV and help them achieve and maintain low HIV viral loads. An analysis of data from the Medical Monitoring Project found that an estimated 23 percent of MSM receiving outpatient HIV medical care reported unmet needs for dental care, and 19 percent reported unmet needs for eye or vision care. Additionally, 12 percent of MSM reported unmet needs for food or nutrition services, and 8 percent reported unmet needs for peer group support. The analysis also identified the highest prevalence of unmet needs among young MSM and MSM of color – populations with the highest rates of new HIV infection and poor HIV treatment outcomes. Many of the reasons MSM have unmet needs for ancillary services reflect inadequate knowledge of available services or insufficient resources for obtaining services. Co-locating ancillary services with routine HIV medical care may help improve access. The findings underscore the importance of addressing ancillary services for MSM to improve health outcomes and reduce HIV-related health disparities.

Update: Influenza Activity — United States and Worldwide, May 22–September 10, 2016

CDC recommends yearly influenza vaccination for all people 6 months of age and older without contraindications. Vaccination should be offered by the end of October, if possible, and continue throughout the influenza season as long as influenza viruses are circulating. While a yearly influenza vaccination is the best way to prevent influenza, prescription antiviral medications can treat influenzaillness and are recommended for use in patients who are very sick with influenza or who are sick and at high risk of serious influenza complications. Influenza antiviral drugs can lessen duration and severity of illness and help prevent more severe illness. Antiviral drugs work best when started within two days of getting sick. The U.S. experienced typical low levels of seasonal influenza activity overall from May 22 to September 10, 2016; however, since late August, CDC received reports of a small number of localized influenza A (H3N2) outbreaks. Influenza A (H1N1) pdm09, influenza A (H3N2), and influenza B viruses were detected during May – September worldwide and in the U.S.  It is not possible to predict which influenza virus strains will predominate nor the timing or severity of the 2016–17 season. It is also not possible to predict how effective influenza vaccine will be this season because many factors can influence effectiveness.  However, CDC does not anticipate the low level of vaccine effectiveness caused by antigenic drift that was seen during the 2014-15 influenza season; this is because most of the circulating viruses characterized in CDC laboratories since February 2016 do not show significant antigenic changes. 

Notes from the Field

  • Fentanyl Overdose Events Caused by Smoking Contaminated Crack Cocaine — British Columbia, Canada, July 15–18, 2016
  • Pediatric Death from Meningococcal Disease in a Family of Romani Travelers — Sarasota, Florida, 2015



Page last reviewed: September 22, 2016