Seasonal Influenza

Note

For example, fever >100ºF and a cough and/or a sore throat without another cause

Viral Testing

Testing should be limited to influenza season, when flu activity is high in the community (>10%)

With high influenza activity, a negative test DOES NOT rule out influenza

  • Available at clinics and EDs across MHS

  • Turnaround time is about 60 mins

  • Several factors decrease the accuracy of the rapid assay, therefore if a patient presents with influenza-like illness while influenza is actively circulating in the community, a negative test DOES NOT rule out influenza

  • Performed only at Central Microbiology Laboratory (located on the TG/MB campus), with a turnaround time of 1 hour after receipt of the specimen via the courier system.

  • PCR has a higher sensitivity than the rapid assay, with a negative predictive value >98%

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