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As Alabama, Arkansas, Delaware, and New York and other states report higher incidence of flu compared with previous years, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reveals that A(H3N2) viruses are predominating this season, and has issued a summary of antiviral drug treatment recommendations. According to the agency, previous seasons in which A(H3N2) viruses were predominant were associated with more hospitalizations and deaths among older adults and young children vs other age groups. Vaccine effectiveness has also been lower against A(H3N2) viruses than against other strains, historically. Therefore, in addition to vaccination for prevention, the CDC is urging healthcare providers to consider antiviral medications to treat patients with flu. “The neuraminidase inhibitor (NAI) antiviral medications are most effective in treating influenza and reducing complications when treatment is started early,” the CDC says. “Evidence from previous influenza seasons suggests that NAI antivirals are underutilized in outpatients and hospitalized patients with influenza who are recommended for treatment.”

Update: CDC Stresses Antiviral Treatment for Flu Patients as Cases Pile Up
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