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11 new flu deaths in Estonia last week

Flu season.
Flu season. Source: Aili Vahtla/ERR

The number of influenza cases in Estonia remains on the rise, with 11 flu-related deaths last week bringing this flu season's total death toll to 34.

Last week, a total of 7,493 patients sought medical attention due to viral upper respiratory infections, 42 percent of whom were children. The number of such patients to be diagnosed with influenza or flu-like illnesses increased 13 percent compared to the week before, the Health Board announced.

The number of cases of the flu or flu-like illness was highest in Lääne-Viru County, Harju County, Ida-Viru County and the city of Narva, and Rapla, Viljandi and Tartu Counties.

"Based on the current situation, we can confirm that peak flu season has arrived," said the Health Board.

Since the beginning of the current flu season in October, 730 flu patients have required hospitalization and 105 intensive care, 99 of whom belonged to risk groups.

As of the end of February, the flu has claimed the lives of 34 people between the ages of 53-98 in Estonia, 31 of whom were over 65 years of age. All of the victims belonged to risk groups based on age and serious chronic illness, and none of them were vaccinated against the flu.

Three strains of flu are currently making the rounds in Estonia: influenza A(H1N1), influenza B, and influenza A(H3N2). Of the three, influenza B continues to dominate this season.

Editor: Aili Vahtla

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