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At a Glance

Philadelphia Seasonal Influenza Activity (last updated 3/22/21)

  • Number of Lab-Confirmed Reports: 11*
  • Number of Hospitalized Cases: 11**
  • Number of Deaths: 0

*Different surveillance systems are maintained for influenza. Only a subset of laboratories report positive influenza results.

**Reports not limited to facilities who participate in laboratory testing.

Current Recommendations

Current Recommendations

  • Annual influenza vaccine is recommended for ALL persons 6 months of age or older. Providers should offer influenza vaccination to all patients at every opportunity.
  • Healthcare worker influenza vaccination is recommended and endorsed by the Centers for Disease Control and almost every professional organization. Providers should be vaccinated to protect patients, themselves, and their families.
  • Respiratory etiquette is also important during influenza season. Everyone should cover their cough and practice regular hand-washing, especially when symptomatic.

Latest Updates: Influenza activity is currently characterized as LOW in Pennsylvania (influenza outbreaks or increases in influenza-like illness cases or laboratory-confirmed influenza in at least half of a state's regions.)

Topic Priority Date of Alert
Urgent CDC Recommendations on Immunizations and Therapeutics Given Increased Respiratory Disease Activity Advisory Dec 27, 2023
Guidance for Clinicians on Human Infections with Variant Influenza Viruses Alert Aug 15, 2023
Testing for Influenza in Persons with Severe Respiratory Illness Advisory Jun 23, 2023
Interim Guidance for Clinicians to Prioritize Antiviral Treatment of Influenza in the Setting of Reduced Availability of Oseltamivir Advisory Dec 15, 2022
Increased Need for Outpatient Pediatric Sick Appointments Advisory Nov 9, 2022


Vaccine Information

  • Influenza vaccination is the most effective tool available to prevent illness due to influenza. Getting vaccinated reduces the risk of flu-related doctor's visits, hospitalization, and death.
  • Anyone can receive an age-appropriate influenza vaccine except infants <6 months of age and people with history of a severe, life-threatening allergic reaction to flu vaccine or any flu vaccine ingredient. Most people with egg allergies can receive flu vaccines.
  • Flu vaccine is especially important for people who are at higher risk of serious complications from influenza including children <5 years, adults 65 years and older, pregnant women and people who have:
    • Asthma and other chronic lung diseases
    • Diabetes
    • Metabolic disorders
    • Immunocompromising conditions (i.e., HIV/AIDS, cancer) or who take immunocompromising medicines
    • Neurologic conditions
    • Obesity
    • Blood disorders like sickle cell diseases
  • Providers should continue to give influenza vaccine as long as influenza is still circulating in the community.
  • PDPH PhilaVax Immunization Information System
  • PDPH Community Flu Clinics
  • CDC Seasonal Influenza Vaccination Resources

Diagnosis & Management

It is very difficult to distinguish flu from other viral or bacterial respiratory illnesses based on symptoms alone. There are tests available to diagnose flu. More information is available: Diagnosing Flu.


For Healthcare Providers:

Reporting to PDPH

The following influenza cases need to be reported to the Philadelphia Department of Public Health (PDPH)

  • Hospitalized persons with laboratory-confirmed influenza (including positive rapid antigen tests)
  • Persons admitted to the ICU with laboratory-confirmed influenza, RSV, rhinovirus, adenovirus, parainfluenza, or human metapneumovirus infections
  • Fatal cases of laboratory-confirmed or suspected influenza, RSV, rhinovirus, adenovirus, parainfluenza, and human metapneumovirus
  • Suspect novel influenza A cases including those with:
    • Influenza A virus detected but not subtypeable
    • Influenza-like illness (temperature equal to or greater than 100ºF and cough and/or sore throat without other known etiology)and report direct or indirect exposure to swine or live poultry or travel to area with ongoing transmission of avian influenza within week prior to symptom onset
  • Institutional outbreaks of respiratory illness including those occurring in a long-term care facility, school, childcare center, or shelter. Outbreaks are defined as one laboratory-confirmed case or two or more cases of Influenza-like illness in a facility.
  • Report influenza cases to PDPH by calling 215-685-6740 during business hours or completing and faxing an influenza report form below to 215-238-6947

Health Educational Materials

Links and Resources

Guidelines for Management and Control

Healthcare Facilities

Long Term Care Facilities

Childcare Centers

K-12 Schools


Animal Exposures

For Patients and Community Members:


I Can't Cover my Shift (PDF)

Got The Flu? (PDF)

They Count On You! (PDF)

Stop, It's Flu Season (PDF)

Tissue, Sleeve, or Mask (PDF)