Maine CDC Health Advisory

June 10, 2024

Avian Flu Updates, All Influenza Specimen Submission Request, Respiratory Viral Testing Availability

In response to an ongoing panzootic of highly pathogenic avian influenza A(H5N1) in wild birds, poultry, and cattle, clinicians should (1) assess for relevant exposure history in patients with respiratory illness, (2) continue testing for influenza in patients with compatible illness in the summer months, and (3) send all influenza A and influenza B positive specimens to Maine Health and Environmental Testing Laboratory (HETL) for subtyping.

In addition to influenza, there are other respiratory viruses that cause illness in Maine, some of which circulate in the summer. HETL is now offering respiratory viral panel testing free of charge in order to better understand which viruses cause respiratory illness in Maine. Testing includes adenovirus, respiratory enterovirus, influenza A/B, parainfluenza 1-4, RSV, rhinovirus, and SARS-CoV-2, and is only available for symptomatic patients.

Advisory (PDF)