Results from two observational studies show patients with HIV receiving care at a hospital in Malawi were nearly three times more likely to have an influenza-like illness and five times more likely to develop severe influenza.

In addition, Antonia Ho, MBChB, MRCP, MSc, clinical research fellow at the Institute of Infection and Global Health, University of Liverpool, and colleagues found that more than half of the hospital’s influenza cases were attributable to HIV.

“Taken together, data from the two studies present a persuasive argument for a strong association between HIV and influenza,” Ho and colleagues wrote in Clinical Infectious Diseases. “The finding that over half of hospitalized influenza presentations in Malawian adults were attributable to HIV further emphasize its critical role in severe influenza in this population.”