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In total, 1,333 new influenza cases and 2,582 COVID-19 cases were added this week

In week 51, a grand total of 5,193 people fell ill with acute respiratory infections. Overall, 37.2% of all of the new cases involved children. In total, 1,333 new influenza cases were registered. A total of 2,582 new COVID-19 cases were also added.

According to Olga Sadikova, chief specialist at the Health Board’s Influenza Centre, the influenza virus is still spreading widely, but the increase in the number of new cases has slowed. ‘The number of new influenza cases which were confirmed through laboratory testing increased by 64% within the last week. The number of people who sought medical attention due to acute upper respiratory tract infections dropped by 27% however, very likely due to the festive season and the beginning of the school holidays,’ explained Sadikova.

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’), the number of new cases is high, and the spread of the influenza virus wide. Based on initial data, influenza A cases form 46.8% of all Sentinel samples to have been analysed. The spread of influenza can be seen as being even across all age groups.

SARS-CoV-2 and HMPV (human metapneumovirus) form 15.9% and 14.3% of all case, respectively. The spread of SARS-CoV-2 is equal across all age groups. A third of all HMPV cases to have been registered involve schoolchildren. The share of RS viruses amounts to 7.9% of the total. The virus mainly affects children up to the age of four.

According to the Health and Welfare Information Systems Centre, fifty-eight patients were hospitalised last week due to influenza (an increase of 52%), and as many as eighty-two people have been hospitalised within the last two weeks. The need for hospital treatment has increased considerably over the past week amongst people who are above the age of sixty-five. Since the beginning of the season, a total of 220 patients have been hospitalised due to influenza.

In total, 2,582 new COVID-19 cases were confirmed over the week. The number of new cases to be registered dropped by 17.4% when compared to last week. In total, forty-six new cases were registered in welfare institutions after the festive break. No new hospitalisation cases or deaths were added from welfare institutions. The increase in the number of new cases is related to the higher number of welfare institution visits over the festive period.

As of Wednesday morning, a total of 261 people are in hospital due to COVID-19, of which a hundred required treatment due to the presence of symptomatic COVID-19. This week saw seventeen deaths being added to the overall total. Those deaths involved individuals from the 64-103 age range, and all of those individuals had serious underlying illnesses. The three-week school holidays may slow down the spread of the virus. For now a slow increase continues, with the load on hospitals being expected to increase towards the end of January or at the beginning of February.

Sadikova would like to remind everyone that influenza and COVID-19 are both serious diseases. ‘Small children, pregnant women, chronically ill individuals, and the elderly are especially at a high level of risk,’ she explained, adding that even those individuals who exhibit only mild symptoms themselves may spread the virus to at-risk individuals who may find themselves in a life-threatening condition in the event that they do fall ill. ‘Visiting at-risk individuals when you are ill should be avoided in the high season for virus spread,’ she said.

Sadikova also reminded everyone that people should stay at home even if they exhibit mild symptoms. ‘In order to avoid falling ill, please observe general preventive measures: avoid crowded places and maintain a safe distance from other people, wash your hands frequently, and cover your mouth with a tissue or your sleeve when you sneeze or cough,’ she added.

Memo for viral diseases:

  • If you are ill, stay at home
  • Only visit individuals who are included in any of the risk groups if you yourself are healthy *
  • If you are unsure, get tested
  • If you fall ill, get in touch with your family physician or call the family physician advisory line (1220)
  • If you are included in any of the risk groups, avoid crowded places or wear a mask in such places
  • Get yourself vaccinated if you have not yet done so
  • Observe general hygiene rules

Veel uudiseid samal teemal


A total of 202 influenza and 1,726 COVID-19 cases reported this week 

In week fifteen, a total of 3,184 people fell ill with acute respiratory infections, of whom 38.4% were children. The overall incidence of acute respiratory viral diseases increased by 39%.


A total of 151 new influenza cases and 1,466 COVID-19 cases have been added this week

In week fourteen, a grand total of 2,297 people fell ill with acute respiratory infections. Overall, 36.4% of all of the new cases involved children. The number of new cases decreased by a third.