n South African Medical Journal - The scramble for influenza vaccine in 2010 : editorial




In 2009 South Africa, like the rest of the world, experienced the 'swine flu' pandemic caused by influenza A (H1N1) 2009 virus (H1N1). The influenza epidemic curve for South Africa during 2009 testified to the introduction of the virus, as it superseded the influenza A H3N2 strain (H3N2) as the predominant circulating virus at the end of the season. Predicting patterns of influenza is difficult, and although most influenza cases in South Africa in 2010 may also be due to H1N1, it is uncertain to what degree H3N2 and influenza B will play their parts. Mercifully, H1N1 in 2009 caused mild influenza-like illness (ILI) in most infected persons; with 12 640 laboratory-confirmed cases (a portion of the true number), only 93 laboratory-confirmed H1N1-associated deaths occurred.


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