Latest surveillance report

COVID-19 activity remains at low levels however is gradually increasing across indicators. Influenza activity is at moderate levels. Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) activity is moderate with notifications declining.

Summary of epidemiological week 38, ending 23 September 2023

COVID-19 notifications increased by 10.5% in the past week and polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test positivity at sentinel laboratories is at 5.5%, similar to early July 2023.  Emergency department (ED) presentations for COVID-19 are slowly increasing. Influenza notifications increased by 5% and PCR positivity is 5.8%; ED activity is stable. respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) notifications declined by 12% overall in the past week (-15.7% in 0-4-year-olds) and PCR positivity is 1.8%. ED presentations for bronchiolitis in young children are stable. Human metapneumovirus test positivity is at 4.7%. 

Data sources and methods

NSW Health continually reviews the methods used to monitor respiratory virus activity in New South Wales. This is due to the changes in testing, notification patterns and levels of respiratory virus, including COVID-19, in the community. These changes affect the usefulness of notifications for monitoring virus activity and community transmission over time. The Public Health, Rapid, Emergency and Syndromic Surveillance (PHREDSS) data, COVID-19 sewage surveillance program, whole genome sequencing (WGS) data and sentinel laboratory respiratory virus test results are currently of most value for monitoring COVID-19 and other respiratory viruses of importance in the community.

This report will be published fortnightly from 13 October 2023. The scope of data reported may vary as required for effective public health messaging and action.

Current as at: Thursday 28 September 2023
Contact page owner: Health Protection NSW