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Paradigm Shift Intervention Monitoring
Cases have risen to 87.1 per 100,000
people, from 32.8 in the previous week.
Rates of flu are highest in children aged between 5 and 14, followed by children under four, and those aged between 15 and 44.
Rates have also increased in adults aged between 45 and 64, says the weekly bulletin from the Royal College of GPs.
The above comments have the latest ILI figures for the UK, which show a marked rise in the past two weeks. However, these levels are still well below levels from last season which peaked at levels close to 300, or more than 3 fold higher than the levels cited above. Thus, in spite of these relatively low rates for the population as a whole, the 302 ICU cases are well above the peak of 180 cases reported for last season.
These figures indicate the H1N1 in circulation is markedly more virulent than last season, and the spike in ICU and ECMO cases, including those without underlying conditions, threatens health care delivery, especially for the most severe cases.
These numbers continue to suggest that the genetic changes cited by the WHO report are significant and highlight the need for the release of sequences from the severe and fatal cases reported this month.
It is likely that this H1N1 will continue to spread in the UK and become more prevalent in Western Europe as well as countries throughout the northern hemisphere, signaling the importance of this initial sequence data.