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J Infect Chemother. 2019 Apr 6. pii: S1341-321X(18)30403-3. doi: 10.1016/j.jiac.2019.03.010. [Epub ahead of print]

Association of influenza outbreak in each nursery school and community in a ward in Tokyo, Japan.

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National Institute of Infectious Diseases, Japan. Electronic address:
National Institute of Infectious Diseases, Japan.


In nursery schools, influenza outbreaks have occurred every year. However, influenza characteristics of its diffusion among nursery schools, within each nursery school, and among classes of different ages in nursery schools remains unclear. This paper presents an examination of these matters using the Nursery School Absenteeism Surveillance System (NSASSy). All nursery schools in ward A in Tokyo introduced to the NSASSy in 2015. The study period was November 2015 through March 2016. The data of influenza patients were extracted from NSASSy. We examined four definitions of 'starting date of community outbreak' (SDCO) of influenza: 1) the first recorded day of influenza patients (SDCO1), 2) the last day of influenza patients recorded for two consecutive days (SDCO2), 3) three consecutive days (SDCO3), and 4) four consecutive days (SDCO4). We evaluated those four definitions by duration of the initial case at each nursery school from SDCO and evaluated the proportion of nursery schools at which the initial case occurred before SDCO. The average durations of initial cases at respective nursery schools from SDCO1-4 were 40.3, 26.3, 23.1 and 13.3 days. The respective proportions of nursery schools at which the initial case occurred before SDCO1-4 were 3.1%, 6.4%, 9.4% and 40.6%. Results demonstrate that SDCO3 is an appropriate definition of SDCO. Robustness checks for other areas, seasons, and population size constitute the next challenge for research in this area.


Community outbreak; Influenza; Nursery school; Nursery school absenteeism surveillance system


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