During flu season the Arkansas Department of Health (ADH) produces a Weekly Influenza Report for clinicians. The report provides information on flu activity in the state. The report also compares influenza like illness (ILI) in Arkansas to activity in the US. ADH receives reports of only a fraction of flu cases. Therefore, it is important to understand that the information in the weekly update is representative of the timing and location of activity, but it does not reflect the overall burden of disease. It is presumed that there are many more people actually affected than the report shows.
Positive influenza antigen tests continued to decrease in Arkansas this week. About 27 positive antigens were reported in Week 15 from 13 counties: 23% were Type A and 77% were Type B. For Week 15, one sample was confirmed Positive for influenza by PCR testing as Type B+. There have been a total of 68 flu deaths in Arkansas this flu season. Fifty deaths were among adults aged 65 and older. Four deaths were among children less than 18 years of age. Nationally, a total of 125 pediatric deaths have been reported.