H1N1 in Canada—A Context for Understanding Patients and Their Use of Hospital Services – 11 February 2010

Posted on February 15, 2010. Filed under: Influenza A(H1N1) / Swine Flu | Tags: , |

“H1N1 patients required more intensive hospital care than typical flu patients

February 11, 2010—When compared to a typical flu, the H1N1 virus resulted in a higher proportion of patients requiring specialized hospital services—and affected younger people more—according to a new study released today by the Canadian Institute for Health Information (CIHI).

The study, H1N1 in Canada—A Context for Understanding Patients and Their Use of Hospital Services,is the first of its kind to examine at a pan-Canadian level how hospitalizations for H1N1 differed from hospitalizations associated with a typical flu. It compares Public Health Agency of Canada FluWatch analysis from April to December 2009 with CIHI hospital statistics for the baseline year 2007–2008. The comparison group included patients with influenza and/or pneumonia, the most common complication of influenza.

“The H1N1 pandemic was met with an unprecedented response from public health officials. As the spread of the virus subsides, it is important to pause and look at how H1N1 compares to a typical flu season,” says Jean-Marie Berthelot, Vice President of Programs at CIHI. “Our study shows that proportionately more H1N1 patients needed specialized and intensive hospital services than what we’ve come to expect in a typical flu season.”

Specifically, the study found that from April 12, 2009, to January 2, 2010, the proportion of hospitalized H1N1 patients requiring intensive care was 50% higher than for those admitted to hospital with influenza or pneumonia in the baseline year—with almost one in six H1N1 hospitalized patients admitted to an intensive care unit (ICU). In addition, an estimated 1 in 10 patients admitted to hospital with H1N1 required ventilation to assist with breathing; proportionally, this was more than double the influenza/pneumonia group.”

…continues on the website

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