4:180-AP2 Pandemic Influenza Surveillance and Reporting

During all levels of a pandemic flu outbreak, monitoring and documenting the number of students and faculty who are absent and report having influenza is critical. Keeping track of these numbers helps health officials determine whether: (1) the outbreak is increasing in scope, (2) to declare an epidemic and (3) to close school buildings and facilities. Consult the local public health department for an illness’ expected range.

The following information assists officials with monitoring illness rates and the potential for an epidemic:

  • Basic surveillance level definitions and response actions with instructions as outlined below.
  • Website links to reporting form(s) to submit to the local public health department.
  • Sample attendance log to document flu-related absences.
Surveillance Levels Response Actions
Standard Surveillance – Reported illnesses are within expected range. Monitor attendance for increased reports of absence due to flu-like illness.

Do not report absences to the local health department.

Heightened Surveillance – Reported illnesses exceed expected range. Monitor weekly attendance for flu-like illness/absences on Weekly Influenza Census at:


Begin morning flu check first hour of school; screen those who report positive for symptoms.

Log absences due to flu-like illness on Daily Pandemic Influenza Census Log, a sample is available at:


Send weekly absence report to local health department upon request.

Intensive Surveillance – Reported illnesses significantly exceed expected range. Monitor daily attendance and log absences on Daily Influenza Census or Daily Pandemic Influenza Log at:


Continue morning flu check.

Send daily absence report to local health department upon request.

Begin preparation for potential school closure.

Important Resources:

School Guidance During an Influenza Pandemic, Section III. Surveillance at:


Date Adopted:   October 16, 2007

Date Amended:  September 22, 2020