Via Flu News Europe:
Week 50/2016 (12–18 December 2016)
• Influenza activity increased across the region with epidemic thresholds for ILI/ARI rate being exceeded in ten countries.
• The proportion of virus detections among sentinel surveillance specimens increased to 38%.
• The great majority of influenza viruses detected this week were A(H3N2). Laboratory-confirmed influenza cases from hospital settings increased in some countries.
• It is possible that the season will peak during the holiday season in many countries, which will increase pressure on healthcare systems.
• Sentinel specimen positivity reached 10% in week 46/2016, an indication of a slightly earlier start of the influenza season compared to previous seasons.
• Week 46/2016 was the earliest week in a season that the positivity rate reached 10% since the emergence of A(H1N1)pdm09 viruses in the 2009-2010 influenza season; during the last six seasons this occurred between weeks 48 and 51.
• Since week 40/2016, influenza A viruses have predominated; the great majority (99%) of subtyped influenza A viruses from sentinel sites have been A(H3N2).