During this COCA Call, clinicians will learn about 2018 – 2019 influenza activity and hear an overview of CDC’s recommendations for health care providers regarding influenza vaccination and the use of influenza antiviral medications for the 2018 – 2019 influenza season, including a new antiviral medication approved by the FDA in October 2018.
Influenza activity in the United States is increasing and is expected to continue at elevated levels for several more weeks. Influenza A(H1N1)pdm09 viruses have been most common this season; influenza A(H3N2) and influenza B viruses are also circulating. In the southeastern part of the country, influenza A(H3N2) viruses have been most commonly reported this season. Annual influenza vaccination is recommended for all people 6 months and older and is the best way to prevent influenza and its potentially serious complications. Available evidence consistently indicates that antiviral treatment initiated as early as possible can be a useful second line of defense to treat influenza illness when indicated and can reduce severe outcomes of influenza.