In a report published in Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, Katherine Adams, MPH, and colleagues described the characteristics and prevalence of laboratory-confirmed influenza and SARS-CoV-2 coinfection among pediatric patients who had been hospitalized or died due to influenza. In 6% of influenza-associated hospitalizations and 16% of influenza-associated deaths, SARS-CoV-2 coinfection occurred. A higher proportion of those hospitalized with versus without coinfection received invasive mechanical ventilation (13% vs 4%) and bilevel positive airway pressure or continuous positive airway pressure (16% vs 6%). None
of the coinfected patients who died had completed influenza vaccination, and only one had received influenza antivirals. “To prevent and mitigate the incidence of severe respiratory virus-associated illness during periods of influenza virus and SARS CoV-2 cocirculation, the public and parents should be aware of the risk for pediatric coinfection and adopt prevention strategies, including considering wearing well-fitted, high-quality masks when respiratory virus circulation is high and annual influenza vaccination and up to date COVID-19 vaccination,” Adams and colleagues wrote.