Just as this year’s flu season gets underway, the Middlesex-London Health Unit is out with the final numbers from last year’s flu season.
Lab-confirmed cases, hospitalizations, and deaths were all up year over year, though outbreaks were down.
According to the Health Unit, 489 people had lab-confirmed cases of influenza during the 2015-16 season compared to 381 the year before, 197 were hospitalized compared to 161, and 19 died compared to 14 during the 2014-15 season. Of the deaths, 12 involved people over the age of 65. The majority of the cases were of influenza A.
Just 12 outbreaks were reported last year compared to 40 the year before; nine of the outbreaks were in long term care settings, one in a retirement home, one in a daycare, and one in a detention centre.
The season also peaked later than in previous years, with the first case reported in early October but flu activity not picking up until late January before peaking in mid-March. The last case reported was on May 24th, 2016.
Officials add that those confirmed to have influenza A or B last season ranged in age from just 13 days to 101 years old.