Denmark saw a sharp increase in influenza activity over Christmas and New Year.
According to Tyra Grove Krause, a doctor and section leader at the Statens Serum Institut, reported cases of flu have doubled since week 50 – approximately December 19.
“We have detected nearly 200 confirmed cases, and that is a doubling since week 50,” Krause told Metroxpress. “Overall, 263 patients have been hospitalised for influenza this season, and 136 within the past two weeks.”
Krause said there has also been an increase in the number of patients contacting their own doctor with symptoms of influenza.
A deadly type
Influenza type A (H3N2) is the main culprit. It is particularly hard on those over the age of 65, causing more hospitalisations and deaths than most other strains.
Krause declined to call the current flu outbreak an epidemic, but said that this year’s flu season in Denmark could be a long one.
“We expect a lengthy season this year because it already started before Christmas,” said Krause. “In other years, the season first started in February or March.”
Stay clean and stay home
Krause said that influenza differs from the common cold because those suffering can have a high fever for several days and be left weakened, sometimes for weeks afterwards.
“The best advice is to maintain good hygiene, wash your hands and stay home if you are sick so not to infect others,” she said.