Last week, the number of influenza patients in Valmiera has reached the epidemic threshold, therefore the beginning of the flu epidemic is announced in Latvia from January 15
was informed by the Center for Disease Prevention and Control (SPCC).
Monitoring data from the SPCC show that in the second week of this year, 163.6 cases of influenza per 100,000 inhabitants were recorded in one of the ten areas included in the monitoring, namely the threshold of 100 per 100,000 inhabitants.
In the second week of this year, 78.6 cases of influenza per 100,000 inhabitants were registered in Riga, 57.7 in Jelgava, 45 in Ventspils, 35.3 in Jurmala, 22.8 in Daugavpils and 13.1 in 100,000 in Liepaja.
On average, in Latvia, the flu intensity has reached 52.8 cases per 100,000 inhabitants.
Influenza patients hospitalized last week were reported by hospitals in Riga, Jelgava, Liepaja, Rezekne, Ventspils and Jekabpils, where 113 patients were hospitalized, of which 33 patients with influenza-induced pneumonia. Since the start of the flu season, a total of 428 hospitalized patients have been reported, including 72 in cases of influenza pneumonia.
As indicated by SPCC, older people with chronic flu and chronic diseases – cardiovascular, lung and kidney chronic diseases, diabetes, oncology patients, patients with chronic infections, and people with weakened immune status are hardest hit. Influenza is particularly dangerous for young children and pregnant women.
The best protection against influenza and flu-related complications is the annual vaccination, stressed specialists. Taking into account that the immunity develops within 14 days after vaccination and the spread of influenza usually lasts for several months – until the end of May, vaccination against influenza is not too late during the epidemic, emphasizes SPCC specialists, adding that it is also recommended for health workers to be vaccinated protect their patients and themselves.
SPCC epidemiologists recall that to prevent the spread of viruses, if a person has influenza or flu-like illness, wipes or coughs should be used and then washed hands. Epidemiologists invite you to stay home and contact your family doctor in case of illness.
Meanwhile, the National Health Service recalls that during an influenza epidemic, family home visits to influenza patients are paid from the state budget if the registered patient lives in the doctor's main area of activity. These patients have to pay only a national fee of 2.85 euros for the visit.
This year, the flu epidemic was announced a little earlier than last year. Last year, the flu epidemic was announced on January 30, when 117.9 cases per 100,000 inhabitants were registered in Daugavpils. But after about four months, on May 3, the flu epidemic came to an end.
The flu last season claimed more than 40 lives.