Health & NHS
Flu cases continue to rise
The final days of 2019 saw influenza activity continuing to increase in the community.
In the seven days to January 3, there were 94 new acute respiratory outbreaks reported in the community. Of these 53 were reported from care homes where 12 tested positive for influenza A, while six outbreaks were reported from hospitals and 34 from schools.
Data from primary care shows the weekly GP consultation rate for influenza-like illness was above baseline threshold levels at 19.4 per 100,000 in week 51 compared to 16 per 100,000 in the week before.
The impact on healthcare services remains at moderate intensity levels, with hospitalisations and ICU/HDU influenza admissions down slightly in week 52 compared to the previous week.
Up to week 51 of 2019 the provisional proportion of people in the target groups who had received a flu vaccination was:
- 40.1 per cent under 65 years in a clinical risk group
- 40.9 per cent in pregnant women
- 70.2 per cent in those aged 65 and over.