CDC GUIDANCE ON THE USE OF INFLUENZA ANTIVIRAL AGENTS AND RAPID INFLUENZA DIAGNOSTIC TESTS DURING
THE 2010-2011 INFLUENZA SEASON
The Delaware Division of Public Health is forwarding this health alert from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
As influenza activity increases in the United States, clinicians are urged to consult CDC guidance on the use of influenza antiviral
agents and rapid influenza diagnostic tests this season. Updated recommendations on the use of antiviral medications will be published in
an upcoming Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR), but an interim version of the recommendations is currently available on
CDC’s website at http://www.cdc.gov/flu/professionals/antivirals/index.htm. The updated guidance for health care professionals on the use of
rapid influenza diagnostic tests is available at http://www.cdc.gov/flu/professionals/diagnosis/clinician_guidance_ridt.htm. For the most recent summary of influenza
activity in the United States, consult the CDC influenza surveillance report FluView at http://www.cdc.gov/flu/weekly/fluactivitysurv.htm.
Antiviral Agents Guidance:
The recommendations on the use of influenza antiviral agents contain information on treatment and chemoprophylaxis of influenza virus
infection, and also provide a summary of the effectiveness and safety of antiviral medications. Highlights incl ude recommendations for the following:
- early empiric antiviral treatment of suspected or confirmed influenza among people with severe, complicated, or progressive
illness or those hospitalized for influenza;
- early empiric antiviral treatment of suspected or confirmed influenza among people at higher risk for influenza complications;
- use of either oseltamivir or zanamivir for influenza A and B treatment or chemoprophylaxis, and recommendations not to use
rimantadine or amantadine as influenza antiviral medications due to high levels of resistance to these medications among circulating
influenza A viruses;
- use of antiviral medications among children younger than 1 year of age;
- use of local data on influenza virus circulation and influenza testing of respiratory specimens from patients with suspected
influenza, when available, to help inform clinicians about influenza circulation; and
- consideration of antiviral treatment for any previously healthy, non high-risk symptomatic outpatient with confirmed or suspected
influenza, based upon clinical judgment, if treatment can be initiated within 48 hours of illness onset.
Rapid Influenza Diagnostic Tests Guidance:
Recommendations on the use of rapid influenza diagnostic tests are available to help guide clinical decisions and to determine if
outbreaks of respiratory illness in closed settings are due to influenza virus infection. The guidance also provides information for
interpreting rapid diagnostic test results. Highlights include recommendations for the following:
- use of rapid influenza diagnostic tests when a positive result will change the clinical management of patients or change outbreak
control strategies in a population, especially if the setting includes hospitalized patients or persons at high risk for
- avoiding the use of negative rapid test results to guide decisions regarding treating patients with influenza antiviral medications
due to the suboptimal sensitivity of rapid tests;
- evaluation of rapid diagnostic test results in the context of other available clinical and epidemiological information; and
- consideration of further influenza laboratory testing in the following circumstances:
- when a patient tests negative by rapid test during periods of high influenza activity;
- when a patients tests positive by rapid test during periods of low influenza activity; or
- when a patient has had recent close exposure to pigs, poultry, or other animals and novel influenza A virus infection is
For More Information
You are receiving this email because you are a registered member of the Delaware Health Alert Network. If you are not a member and would
like to subscribe, please register at https://healthalertde.org
Categories of Health Alert messages:
- Health Alert: Conveys the highest level of importance; warrants immediate action or attention.
- Health Advisory: Provides important information for a specific incident or situation; may not require immediate action.
- Health Update: Provides updated information regarding an incident or situation; unlikely to require immediate action.
NOTE: This page is for informational purposes only and dated material (e.g. temporary websites) may not be available.