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Influenza blog, week 44: six new influenza A cases were added

Week 44 saw a total of 3,308 people fall ill with acute respiratory infections, of whom 38% were children. The average number of cases out of every 100,000 people was 248.7. Six new influenza A cases were confirmed through laboratory tests in week 44.

Based on information which had been logged during a targeted survey of acute upper respiratory tract infections (with this survey being known as ‘Sentinel Monitoring’), it can be seen that the intensity of the spread of viruses is low, with the spread of the influenza virus being particularly limited. Compared to figures for last week, the number of new cases increased amongst the 5-14 and 15-64 age groups by 17.4% and 5.7% respectively. The majority of cases still involved children up to the age of five.

The etiologic structure has remained unchanged, with calculations being based on the targeted survey of acute upper respiratory tract infections (Sentinel Monitoring). The new cases are mainly being caused by rhinoviruses, followed by SARS-CoV-2 and parainfluenza.

According to the Health and Welfare Information Systems Centre, since the beginning of the season eight patients have been hospitalised due to influenza, including three children from the below-four years of age group and four elderly patients.

In 2022 vaccination against influenza is available free of charge for anyone who normally receives general and special care services, plus anyone who is over the age of sixty, pregnant women, children up to the age of seven, and all minors who are included in any risk groups. Free vaccines will arrive at the end of October. The Health Board will provide notification via the normal media channels when vaccinations can be provided to all eligible parties. Read more online.