CDC issues advisory for treatment of flu patients: 3 things to know

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The CDC issued an official health advisory Dec. 27 recommending providers administer antiviral medications to all hospitalized, severely ill and high-risk patients with suspected or confirmed influenza.

Here are three things to know.

1. The CDC issued the advisory amid a sharp rise in influenza activity around the nation in recent weeks.

2. The flu strain primarily responsible for this pronounced increase in viral activity is influenza A (H3N2). This strain has been associated with increased hospitalizations and deaths among elderly adults and young children in previous flu seasons. Additionally, the flu shot has displayed less efficacy against the H3N2 strain than other influenza A strains and influenza B.

3. In the alert, the CDC recommended "all hospitalized patients and all high-risk patients (either hospitalized or outpatient) with suspected influenza should be treated as soon as possible with a neuraminidase inhibitor antiviral."

To read the full CDC alert, click here.

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