European Center for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) Warning, this Tuesday, l The potential for the upcoming flu season to be especially severe for the elderly, distance early detection In some cases, the called for vaccination.
For his part, the National Institute of Health Dr. Ricardo Jorge (INSA) announced She confirmed to the newspaper, “Inevitável”, that there are Signs that the flu is starting sooner. “in Portugal, Since the summer, we have detected an increase in respiratory infections, particularly associated with respiratory syncytial virus, especially in children under five years of age. We currently monitor, in addition to respiratory syncytial virus, intermittent circulation of influenza virus, which is Warns of the possibility of a previous influenza epidemic than in previous years,” says the institute.
In addition to the early identification of cases, the main variable detected among the cases recorded in the last month is Influenza Awhich, according to the ECDC, It disproportionately affects the elderly associated with Lower Vaccine Efficacy. A pulmonologist and consultant to the Directorate General of Health (DGS) for influenza, Felipe Frois, explained to the same newspaper that the influenza A virus subtype has already spread in other winters, but stressed that The virus has properties that make it aggressive for the elderly.
According to the ECDC, in The past year has seen a significant decrease, more than 99%, in the number of cases of influenza virus In the European Union, perhaps as a result of the rules and care imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic.
“After our experience with the Covid-19 epidemic, we now have more Evidence that non-pharmacological interventions such as social distancing and hygiene measures can effectively limit the spread of the virus‘, points out the same expert.
ECDC advocates the maintenance of many of these concerns, highlighting Importance of vaccination against SARS-CoV-2 and influenza Which, according to Bassie Bentinen, “also provides good protection against serious diseases.” “Those who work in homes or in a healthcare setting should ensure that they are vaccinated before the winter months,” he reiterated.
In Portugal, influenza vaccination began at the end of September for residents, users, professionals in social response institutions, patients and professionals from the Integrated Continuing Care Network, specialists from the National Health Service (SNS) and pregnant women.
However, it has been extended to people over 65 who have also been recalled since October 11 to receive the third dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, as well as home users and long-term care units.
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