Influenza cases double with more expected in the coming weeks

Medicine and a thermometer (photo is illustrative).
Medicine and a thermometer (photo is illustrative). Source: Karin Koppel

Last week cases of flu in Estonia doubled. While the intensity of morbidity remains low it is expected that cases of influenza will rise in the coming weeks.

Laboratory-confirmed influenza viruses are on the rise but the spread of the virus is thought to be limited and no epidemic has been observed in Estonia yet.

Two influenza type A viruses and 21 influenza type B viruses have been confirmed since the start of the flu season. Influenza-related illnesses have been reported in Tallinn, Ida-Viru County, Pärnu County, Tartu County and Võru County. 

Compared to the same time period in previous years, the morbidity rate remained at the same level or lower. Currently, more cases of influenza B virus have been diagnosed in Estonia than the A virus.

The Health Board said during flu season good behavior before and during an illness helps keep people keep healthy and prevents the virus from spreading.

"With the coming school holidays, it is good to reiterate the fact that it is important to keep the child at home until they are fully recovered. Mass events should be avoided where possible and sick children should not go to the cinema or spa," said the Health Insurance Fund's flu specialist Olga Sadikova, who added that children should also be taught not to use other children's drink bottles and spoons or to rub their eyes with their unwashed hands.

"It is important to remember that coughs and sneezes should be covered with a tissue. The used tissue should then be thrown away immediately and hands should then be washed with soap," she said.


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Editor: Helen Wright

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