Flu Activity 66% Lower Than This Time in 2022
Walgreens Inc. today announced flu activity is 66% lower than this time last year. However, flu activity is 34% higher when looking at pre-pandemic seasons, such as 2018-2019.
Unfortunately, flu activity increased 13% over the past week, according to the 2023-2024 Walgreens Flu Index®.
On October 19, 2023, the leading markets with the highest flu activity were in the south-central U.S., led by Texas.
These markets include Harlingen-Weslaco-Brownsville- McAllen, Texas (1.20x the national average), Lafayette, La. (0.57x the national average), and Beaumont-Port Arthur, Texas (0.50x the national average).
"After several atypical flu seasons, this year's flu index is showing a more gradual ramp-up of flu activity closer to the pre-pandemic norm," said Dr. Kevin Ban, Walgreens Chief Medical Officer, in today's press release.
"While it's early days and flu season is always unpredictable, our historical data suggest this could be a return to a typical two-wave flu season where the activity starts to peak in December and reaches its highest point in February, rather than the single peak we saw last year, which was earlier but lower than the norm."
The Top 10 DMAs with the Highest Flu Activity are as follows:
- Harlingen-Weslaco-Brownsville-McAllen, Texas
- Lafayette, La.
- Beaumont-Port Arthur, Texas
- Puerto Rico
- New Orleans, La.
- Honolulu, Hawaii
- El Paso, Texas (Las Cruces, N.M.)
- Columbus-Tupelo-West Point-Houston, Miss.
- Corpus Christi, Texas
- Anchorage, Alaska
"It's just as important as ever to get your annual flu shot, and now is the time to do it," added Dr. Ban. "Walgreens makes it easy for the whole family to get annual flu shots, the updated vaccines for those eligible, all in one visit."
For the 2023-2024 flu season, nasal, egg-based, and cell-based flu shots are approved by the U.S. CDC.
To schedule a flu test or learn more about testing and treatment options at Walgreens, visit Walgreens.com/Testing.
The Walgreens Flu Index® is an online, interactive tool that ranks the top markets and states for flu activity in the United States, including Puerto Rico, and the top markets and states showing the most significant increases in flu activity week-over-week. Through the time-lapse feature of the Walgreens Flu Index®, users can see how current flu activity compares to last flu season.
International flu season updates are published by Precision Vax.