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ECDC situation report on outbreak of influenza A(H1N1) 23 Dec 2009

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Main developments in the past 24 hours

- Reminder of schedules for ECDC Daily Update and WISO for Holiday period;

- WHO update: Pandemic (H1N1) 2009 briefing note 20

- Swedish vaccination coverage estimated at 61 per cent, may exceed 70

- European Medicines Agency report to be released on the 23rd of December

- A total of 1 702 fatal cases in Europe and EFTA countries and 10 496 in the rest of the world have been

This report is based on official information provided by national public health websites or through other official communication channels. Reported number of confirmed 2009 pandemic influenza A (H1N1) cases admitted to hospitals and intensive care, by country, as of 23 December 2009, 9.00 CEST in EU and EFTA countries are in Table 1. An update on the number of confirmed fatal cases for the world and Europe is presented in Table 2.

ECDC Holiday Period Schedule

During the Holiday Period (24 December, 2009 to 3 January, 2010) and the following week (4-8 January, 2010), ECDC will follow a modified weekday publication schedule for the regular ECDC 2009 influenza A (H1N1) pandemic newsletters. No newsletters will be produced on the Friday 25th of December (Christmas Day) or Wednesday the 6th of January (Epiphany), which are ECDC and Public Holidays in Sweden.

During the above mentioned period, the ECDC Daily Update will be published during the regular weekdays and on the 31st of December (New Years Eve), but released at 14:00 in the afternoon (2 pm) instead of the regular time of 9:00 in the morning.

The ECDC Weekly Influenza Surveillance Overview (WISO) will be produced on Thursday the 24th of December. The next WISO is scheduled for Friday the 8th of January. An additional WISO may be produced on the 31st of December (New Years Eve). The New Years Eve WISO issue is produced only if major changes in the situation are detected.

Please note: In contrast to what was announced on the 21st and 22nd of December, no WISO will be published on the 5th of January.

The regular schedule for the ECDC 2009 influenza A (H1N1) pandemic newsletters will resume on Monday the 11th of January, 2010.

WHO 2009 influenza A(H1N1) pandemic remains moderate but affects young

WHO released the Pandemic (H1N1) 2009 briefing note 20 on the 22nd of December, 2009. In the note, WHO discusses the challenges relating to accurately assessing the epidemiology of the pandemic. Efforts to assess the severity of the H1N1 influenza pandemic sometimes compare numbers of confirmed deaths with those estimated for seasonal influenza, either nationally or worldwide. WHO continues to assess the impact of the influenza pandemic as moderate, and points out that younger age groups are affected more by the 2009 influenza A(H1N1) pandemic than usually is the case in seasonal influenza. This is also evident among the severe and fatal cases.

For further information: http://www.who.int/csr/disease/swineflu/notes/briefing_20091222/en/index.html

Swedish vaccination coverage estimated at 61 per cent

The Swedish National Board of Health and Welfare estimates that 61 percent of the Swedish population have already been vaccinated against the 2009 pandemic influenza A(H1N1) virus. This is revealed in a report released on the 22nd of December. Of the 39 percent who have not yet been vaccinated, approximately one third respond that they will do so.

This would give a vaccination coverage of approximately 70 percent.

For furher information: http://www.socialstyrelsen.se/pressrum/nyhetsarkiv/vaccinationstackningenkanbliover80procent

EMA (European Medicines Agency) report to be released on the 23rd of December

EMA will publish its fourth pandemic pharmacovigilance weekly update later today on the agency webpage.

For further information: http://www.ema.europa.eu/influenza/updates.html

Epidemiologic update

All 27 EU and 4 EFTA countries are reporting cases of pandemic (H1N1) 2009 influenza. A total of 1 702 deaths have been reported since April 2009 (Table 2). Since week 41 the numbers of deaths each has shown a steady increase almost doubling every fortnight over the last six weeks. While the most deaths have to date been in Western Europe there are increasing numbers of deaths being reported from Central and Eastern Europe. The reported cumulative fatal pandemic (H1N1) cases in the world have now passed 10 000 cases (Table 2). However, because of lack of laboratory confirmation and underreporting among other factors, this is likely to be a gross underestimation of the true number of fatalities associated with the pandemic. Available updates on hospital admissions, per Member State, can be found in Table 1.