Skip to main content
×
Home
    • Aa
    • Aa

Influenza-attributable deaths, Canada 1990–1999

  • D. L. SCHANZER (a1), T. W. S. TAM (a1), J. M. LANGLEY (a2) and B. T. WINCHESTER (a1)
Abstract
SUMMARY

The number of deaths attributable to influenza is believed to be considerably higher than the number certified by vital statistics registration as due to influenza. Weekly mortality data for Canada from the 1989/1990 to the 1998/1999 influenza seasons were analysed by cause of death, age group, and place of death to estimate the impact of influenza on mortality. A Poisson regression model was found to accurately predict all-cause, as well as cause-specific mortality, as a function of influenza-certified deaths, after controlling for seasonality, and trend. Influenza-attributable deaths were calculated as predicted less baseline-predicted deaths. In summary, throughout the 1990s there were on average just under 4000 deaths attributable to influenza annually (for an influenza-attributable mortality rate of 13/100 000 persons), varying from no detectable excess mortality for the 1990/1991 influenza season, to 6000–8000 influenza-attributable deaths for the more severe influenza seasons of 1997/1998 and 1998/1999. On average, 8% (95% CI 7–10) of influenza-attributable deaths were certified as influenza, although this percentage varied from 4% to 12% from year to year. Only 15% of the influenza-attributable deaths were certified as pneumonia, and for all respiratory causes, 40%. Deaths were distributed over most causes. The weekly pattern of influenza-certified deaths was a good predictor of excess all-cause mortality.

Copyright
Corresponding author
*Author for correspondence: Ms. Dena Schanzer, Modelling and Projection Section, Surveillance and Risk Assessment Division, Center for Infectious Disease Prevention and Control, Public Health Agency of Canada, LCDC Building, 100 Eglantine Driveway, Tunney's Pasture, AL 0602B, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, K1A 0K9. (Email: dena_schanzer@phac-aspc.gc.ca)
Linked references
Hide All

This list contains references from the content that can be linked to their source. For a full set of references and notes please see the PDF or HTML where available.

1. L Simonsen , Pandemic versus epidemic influenza mortality: a pattern of changing age distribution. Journal of Infectious Diseases 1998; 178: 5360.

2. WH Barker , JP Mullooly . Underestimation of the role of pneumonia and influenza in causing excess mortality. American Journal of Public Health 1981; 71: 643645.

6. DP Schopflocher , Pandemic influenza planning: using the U.S. Centres for Disease Control FluAid software for Small Area Estimation in the Canadian Context. Annals of Epidemiology 2004; 14: 7376.

7. WW Thompson , Mortality associated with influenza and respiratory syncytial virus in the United States. Journal of the American Medical Association 2003; 289: 179186.

9. L Simonsen , Estimating deaths due to influenza and respiratory syncytial virus. Journal of the American Medical Association 2003; 289: 24992500.

12. PA Scuffham . Estimating influenza-related hospital admissions in older people from GP consultation data. Vaccine 2003; 22: 28532862.

20. TA Reichert , Influenza and the winter increase in mortality in the United States, 1959–1999. American Journal of Epidemiology 2004; 160: 492501.

Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Epidemiology & Infection
  • ISSN: 0950-2688
  • EISSN: 1469-4409
  • URL: /core/journals/epidemiology-and-infection
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *
×