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This publication is available at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/winter-health-watch-summary-3-november-2016/winter-health-watch-summary-3-november-2016
1.1 Cold Alert
All regions are currently at Level 1 – ‘Winter Preparedness and Action’. Temperatures and weather conditions are not expected to exceed Cold Weather Alert threshold criteria in any region until further notice.
At the start of the 2016 to 2017 influenza season, activity is at low levels in week 43 (ending 30 October 2016). Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) is circulating.
1.3 Syndromic Surveillance
During week 43, there were increases in bronchitis or bronchiolitis across several syndromic systems, particularly in young children. These increases are in line with increasing laboratory reports for respiratory syncytial virus activity.
The number of laboratory reports of norovirus in this season* (since week 27 2016) is 825. This is 6% lower than the average number for the same period in the 5 seasons from season 2011 and 2012 to season 2015 and 2016 (881), and 29% higher than the same weeks last season. Reports of outbreaks of diarrhoea and vomiting in hospitals continue to be reported but at lower levels than in previous years.
The number of laboratory reports of rotavirus in this season* (since week 27 2016) is 699. This is 4% higher than the 10 season average for the same period in the seasons 2003 and 2004 to 2012 and 2013 (670)**. Rotavirus laboratory reports are currently at similar levels to previous years.
1.6 All-Cause Mortality
In week 43 2016, no statistically significant excess all-cause mortality by week of death was seen through the EuroMOMO algorithm in England overall and by age group and across the devolved administrations.
*In order to capture the winter peak of activity in one season, for reporting purposes, the norovirus and rotavirus season runs from week 27 in year 1 to week 26 in year 2, for example week 27 2009 to week 26 2010, July to June.
**Comparison is made with this 10 season period as it is prior to the vaccine introduction.