Maine CDC reminds everyone to take everyday preventive measures against influenza:
• Wash your hands
• Cover your cough
• Stay home when ill
• Get vaccinated - a searchable county listing of flu clinics is available at http://www.211maine.org/flu-clinics/
Maine CDC reported no flu activity for the week ending Oct. 22. Weekly updates on flu activity in Maine are available at http://www.maine.gov/dhhs/boh/influenza_surveillance_weekly_updates.shtml
Weekly updates for the US are available at http://www.cdc.gov/flu/weekly/summary.htm and international updates are available at http://www.cdc.gov/flu/international/activity.htm.
Maine CDC issued a health alert on Oct. 19 about a human case of novel influenza virus of swine origin. US CDC confirmed the novel strain in a child from Cumberland County. A primary care provider evaluated the child, and provided treatment. The child was not hospitalized.
Maine CDC recommends the following for healthcare providers:
• Maintain a heightened awareness for influenza-like illness (ILI) defined as fever greater than 100° with cough or sore throat, in the absence of another known cause.
• Consider influenza testing by PCR for:
o patients with ILI with recent exposure to pigs
o patients with ILI who are hospitalized
o patients with ILI who have died
o patients where a diagnosis of influenza would affect clinical care, infection control, or management of contacts
• Consider use of antivirals to quickly limit potential human transmission
• Vaccinate patients and healthcare workers as a primary strategy to prevent influenza
Please report any cases of laboratory positive influenza to Maine CDC by fax (1-800-293-7534) or by phone through our 24-hour Disease Reporting and Consultation Hotline (1-800-821-5821). All influenza A rapid positive tests should be confirmed by PCR.
Maine CDC has already distributed almost 190,000 doses of state-supplied influenza vaccine to registered providers for the 2011-2012 season.
Nearly 80 school districts are offering school-located flu vaccine clinics (SLVC) again this year. Almost 270 clinics are registered. A list of participating schools is posted at http://www.maine.gov/dhhs/boh/maineflu/flu-clinics.shtml
Schools offering vaccine to students may also provide state-supplied flu vaccine to staff and their dependents to make school clinics more simple, sustainable, and consistent with past practices. Maine CDC will be evaluating the sustainability of this approach for future years. Schools wishing to provide state-supplied flu vaccine to staff and their dependents must be registered through the SLVC process and report vaccine usage through ImmPact2. The letter regarding roster billing for staff vaccinations at school clinics and the roster form are both available in the SLVC toolkit at www.maineflu.gov.
US CDC updates
US CDC has updated the following information on its website:• seasonalflu vaccine dosage and administration Q&A