Hooshmand E, Moa A, Trent M, Kunasekaran M, Poulos. Epidemiology of 2017 influenza outbreaks in nine Australian Aged care facilities. Influenza Other Respir Viruses. 2020 Oct 7. doi: 1
Aim: To describe the epidemiology of influenza outbreaks in nine Sydney aged care facilities in 2017.
Methods: Study data were collected from nine Sydney aged care facilities for 2017 influenza season. Descriptive epidemiological analysis was conducted.
Results: From the nine sites included, with a total of 716 residents, four sites reported laboratory-confirmed influenza outbreaks during the study period, with an attack rate in residents ranging from 6% to 29%. The outbreaks resulted in lockdowns in two facilities and hospitalisation of seven residents. No deaths were reported as a result of influenza infection. Influenza A was the most common influenza type reported across the facilities. The duration of outbreak lasted for 1-4 weeks varied by site.
Conclusion: The 2017 season was a severe influenza season recorded in Australia. About half of the facilities studied experienced outbreaks of influenza, with a high attack rate among residents. Infection prevention and control measures and outbreak management plans are crucial for aged care facilities, including vaccination of staff and visitors to prevent outbreaks among the vulnerable residents.
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