Flu Activity And Data

Epidemiology and Informatics
Public Health

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What you need to know

The flu level in Nebraska is currently:


View the Weekly Influenza (Flu) Report

Flu Activity Levels Defined

Nebraska reports the estimated level of influenza activity each week to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Levels of influenza activity:

  • No activity
  • Sporadic
  • Local
  • Regional
  • Widespread

These levels are defined as follows:

  • No Activity: No lab-confirmed cases of influenza. There is also no reported increase in the number of cases of influenza-like illnesses (ILI).
  • Sporadic: There are reports of small numbers of lab-confirmed cases of the flu or a single laboratory-confirmed flu outbreak. However, there is no increase in cases of ILI.

The next three levels depend on how many state regions report either flu outbreaks or increases in cases of ILI and recent lab-confirmed influenza.

  • Local: Reported in a single region of the state.
  • Regional: Reported in at least two but less than half the regions of the state.
  • Widespread: Reported in at least half the regions of the state.

How Do We Track Influenza Activity?

The Nebraska influenza surveillance system is a joint effort between DHHS and its partners including:

  • Local health departments
  • Public health and clinical laboratories
  • Vital statistics offices
  • Healthcare providers
  • Clinics
  • Emergency departments

Nebraska monitors influenza activity in several ways:

  • Voluntary submission of isolates by clinical virology labs to the Nebraska Public Health Laboratory (NPHL).
  • Voluntary reporting:
    • Virology laboratories in the Nebraska Laboratory Information Network (LIN) report positive test results and total number of tested specimens of respiratory virus.
    • A statewide network of sentinel clinicians reports each week the number of patients with influenza-like illness (ILI). They also report weekly the total number of patient visits by age group.
    • Hospital infection preventionists report each week the number of hospitalizations with a diagnosis of ILI. They also report weekly the total number of admissions by age group.
    • School health officials report how many students are absent due to illness.
  • Monitoring ILI syndromic surveillance data that emergency departments receive.
  • Required reporting of influenza outbreaks in these sites:
    • Long-term care facilities
    • Schools
    • Other congregate settings
  • Required reporting of pediatric deaths due to influenza.