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The coronavirus disease pandemic was declared in March 2020, as the southern hemisphere’s winter approached. Australia expected co-circulation of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2, influenza and other seasonal respiratory viruses. However, influenza notifications were 7,029 (March–September) compared with an average 149,832 for the same period in 2015–2019*, despite substantial testing. Restrictions on movement within and into Australia may have temporarily eliminated influenza. Other respiratory pathogens also showed remarkably changed activity in 2020.


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