The end of the 2019/2020 influenza season was already registered in
early summer 2020, and in the following season. There was an nearly
complete absence of influenza. So far, the sometimes strict Covid-19
containment measures with contact restrictions and the obligation to
wear a mask have been mentioned as reasons. This study looks for further
reaseons and from several perspectives in order to develop strategies
for a representative recording of influenza cases derive. In contrast to
influenza A/B, the other viral respiratory pathogens (adenovirus,
parainfluenza virus and RS virus) do not show any significant reduction.
From 2020, the number of reports of respiratory infections to the RKI
increased from an average of 300,000 annual reports by 2019 to 1,985,985
reports in 2020, over 5,453,017 reports in 2021 and to 29,681,158 in
2022. On the other hand cases of incapacity to work due to respiratory
infections fell from 31.0% in 2019 to 15.3% in 2021.
Influenza-specific diagnoses (ICD: J10.1-3) were encrypted 33,727 times
in 2021, in 2020 there were still 109,846. The reduction in influenza A
and B from 2020 as a result of the comprehensive Covid-19 control
measures, including the obligation to wear masks, cannot be considered a
major reason; rather, the aspect of underreporting of influenza cases
plays a significant role. Therefore, the reporting quantity of the
sentinal practices should be considered and the recording of incapacity
diagnoses should be taken into account.