Factsheet about seasonal influenza
Influenza is a contagious respiratory illness caused by influenza viruses that infect the nose, throat, and sometimes the lungs. It can cause mild to severe illness, and at times can lead to death. The best way to prevent flu is by getting a flu vaccine each year.
European external quality assessment programme for influenza virus 2018
Influenza epidemics occur every winter with high impact on disease burden, hospitalisations and excess mortality in countries in the WHO European Region. To understand the characteristics of circulating influenza viruses during seasonal epidemics, virological influenza surveillance is performed and detected viruses are further characterised at national influenza centres (NICs) that are part of the wider network of the WHO Global Influenza Surveillance and Response System (GISRS). External quality assessments (EQAs) are important instruments in assessing the quality of the generated data that are reported nationally and internationally through The European Surveillance System (TESSy).
External quality assessment for influenza antiviral susceptibility for the European Reference Laboratory Network for Human Influenza
This report presents the results of the influenza virus antiviral (AV) susceptibility external quality assessment (EQA) which was held for European reference laboratories.
CNRL in silico exercise to determine the capabilities of network laboratories to detect triple reassortant swine origin influenza A(H3N2) viruses
Following the emergence of swine influenza A(H3N2) variant (v) viruses with sporadic human infections in North America, the Community Network of Reference Laboratories (CNRL) and the Animal Health and Veterinary Laboratories Agency completed an exercise to assess the CNRL’s capability to detect novel reassortant and circulating triple reassortant swine viruses (TRA) in humans.
External quality assessment scheme for antiviral susceptibility detection in influenza viruses
The first European external quality assessment exercise for antiviral susceptibility detection in influenza viruses was carried out during winter 2010/11. Twenty laboratories from 16 European countries participated in the exercise.
External quality assessment scheme for detection, isolation and characterisation of influenza viruses for the European Reference Laboratory Network for Human Influenza – 2015
In June and July 2015, an influenza virus antiviral susceptibility external quality assessment was held for European reference laboratories. This report presents the result of the third antiviral EQA panel distributed by the European Reference Laboratory Network for Human Influenza since the European Influenza Surveillance Network was established in 2008.
External quality assessment scheme for influenza virus detection, isolation and culture for the European Reference Laboratory Network for Human Influenza, 2013
In September/October 2013, the European Reference Laboratory Network for Human Influenza (ERLI-Net) conducted an external quality assessment (EQA) for the rapid detection of influenza virus, its isolation and culture.
Risk assessment: Laboratory-created A(H5N1) viruses transmissible between ferrets
The results of two, as yet unpublished, investigations of laboratory-induced genetic changes in avian influenza A(H5N1) viruses have been reported to have found that a surprisingly few number of changes make the viruses transmissible between ferrets, the most commonly used model for the way influenza behaves in humans. The possibility that this could have resulted in the development in laboratories of A(H5N1) influenza viruses transmissible between humans has caused concern for public safety and generated unusually high levels of debate in the scientific community. This report summarises and explains the complex public health and scientific issues around these developments including the positive and negative aspects of some of the responses that have been proposed internationally.