Hospitals in Denmark, especially the Capital Region, have received notification from the the infectious disease centre Statens Serum Institut (SSI) that doctors and nurses should take special precautions for patients arriving at hospitals with the flu.
“We saw an increase in the number of cases of flu last week, taking us up to a total of 80 registered cases of influenza type A in Denmark,” Tyra Grove Krause, a section manager at SSI, told Ekstra Bladet. “We imagine the numbers will rise over the coming weeks.”
Patients in hospitals suspected of having influenza are being placed in isolation and treated with specific drugs like Tamiflu.
Denmark is typically hit every five years with a flu epidemic that affects up to 20 percent of the population. It is too early to tell whether an epidemic is on the way this year.
Young at risk
Krause said that children and younger people will be hit harder by this year’s virus than the older population.
“This type of virus resembles the one that flourished for many years back in the 1940s or 50s,” said Krause. “We expect that older people may have developed some immunity.”
The 80 reported cases are of the H1N1 virus, typically called Influenza A, which is the most common strain and also the most severe.
There are also 35 reported cases of Influenza B, which is usually a little less serious.