Flu Cases Continue to Climb


2022 11 22

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The National Public Center under the Ministry of Health (NVSC) informs that the overall rate of influenza, acute respiratory infections (ARI) and COVID-19 disease has increased over the week in the country. Over the period of 14-20 November, the total incidence rate of the diseases reached 707.9 cases per 100 000 compared to 672.4 cases per 100 000 previous week (7-13 November).

The comparison of weeks 45 and 46 shows an increasing trend in the number of influenza and acute respiratory infection cases, and decreasing trend in  the number of COVID-19 cases.

According to the data obtained by NVSC, the lowest incidence rate of these diseases at the end of last week was reported in Utena County, and the highest in Kaunas County.

Data on incidence of influenza, ARI and COVID-19 disease in counties

Last week (14-20 November), 18 individuals were hospitalized due to flu, 16 of which belong to the age group of 0-17 years, compared to 1 person the previous week (7-13 November).

According to the data from the National Public Health Laboratory, in week 45 /2022 a total of 216 specimens were obtained from patients with symptoms of ARI, of which 5 specimens were positive for influenza A virus (non-typed) and 26 were positive for respiratory syncytial virus (RSV).

Seasonal incidence of influenza and acute respiratory infections in Lithuania since 2019

According to the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), for week 45/2022  in Europe out of 38,410 specimens obtained for detection of the influenza virus 1,179 were positive (type A influenza accounted for 89 %, type B – for 11 %).

European weekly data on influenza virus detections by type, season 2022/2023 

For more information visit https://flunewseurope.org/VirusCharacteristics

Vaccines are the most reliable protection

NVSC specialists remind that flu vaccines protect not only against the disease, but also against the complications it causes: bronchitis, pneumonia, sinusitis, ear infections, and disease exacerbation. Influenza vaccinations are offered free of charge to people at risk:

• Persons with chronic medical conditions (including children)
• Persons living in social care and nursing facilities
• Healthcare workers
• Elderly individuals (aged more than 65 years)
• Pregnant women

Frequent, proper handwashing is critical to helping protect yourself and others you come in contact with during flu season. Avoid touching nose, mouth or eyes with unwashed hands. Ventilate and wet-clean the room often, follow hygiene rules when coughing and sneezing.

Antibiotics are ineffective against colds and flu

As The World Antibiotic Awareness Week was commemorated on 18-24 November, it is a good opportunity now to remind  that antibiotics are intended to treat infections caused by bacteria and they do not help fight neither the flu and ARI nor COVID-19.