The UK was one of few European countries to document a substantial wave of pandemic (H1N1) 2009 influenza in summer 2009. The First Few Hundred (FF100) project ran from April-June 2009 gathering information on early laboratory-confirmed cases across the UK. In total, 392 confirmed cases were followed up. Children were predominantly affected (median age 15 years, IQR 10-27). Symptoms were mild and similar to seasonal influenza, with the exception of diarrhoea, which was reported by 27%. Eleven per cent of all cases had an underlying medical condition, similar to the general population. The majority (92%) were treated with antiviral drugs with 12% reporting adverse effects, mainly nausea and other gastrointestinal complaints. Duration of illness was significantly shorter when antivirals were given within 48 h of onset (median 5 vs. 9 days, P=0.01). No patients died, although 14 were hospitalized, of whom three required mechanical ventilation. The FF100 identified key clinical and epidemiological characteristics of infection with this novel virus in near real-time.
McLean, E., Pebody, R. G., Campbell, C., Chamberland, M., Hawkins, C., Nguyen-Van-Tam, J. S., … Watson, J. M. (2010). Pandemic (H1N1) 2009 influenza in the UK: Clinical and epidemiological findings from the first few hundred (FF100) cases. Epidemiology and Infection, 138(11), 1531–1541. https://doi.org/10.1017/S0950268810001366