5 The number of people with the flu is increasing rapidly, there is a flu epidemic –

5 The number of people with the flu is increasing rapidly, there is a flu epidemic –

According to the RIVM of NU.nl, the number of people with flu in the Netherlands has increased significantly in the past week and it therefore seems that there is a flu epidemic in our country. The Institute relies on information from laboratories, hospitals, general practitioners and GGDs.

The flu season got off to a slow start in October last year. This was probably due to the corona measures in force, which meant that people had less contact with each other. Now that the measures have largely been lifted, the risk of respiratory infections such as flu is increasing again.

The symptoms of the flu and COVID-19 are very similar. The RIVM says that many people with flu-like symptoms go to a GGD test route or self-test for this reason. Fewer people now go to the GP for respiratory infections, making it more difficult for the institute to monitor the situation.

The Netherlands has a flu epidemic when more than 58 out of 100,000 people with flu-like symptoms visit their doctor two weeks in a row and at least 10% have the flu virus. This data is in the possession of Nivel and the National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM).

Influenza and COVID-19 are both respiratory infections, but they are caused by different viruses. Viruses are spread through droplets released when, for example, coughing and sneezing. Basic measures not only help prevent the spread of the coronavirus, but also the flu virus.

Epidemic, pandemic, endemic: what is it?

  • Epidemic: A virus suddenly becomes very common. It doesn’t always have to be a virus, it could also be a drug epidemic, for example. At some point, many people use drugs.
  • Pandemic: When a virus spreads around the world, it is called a pandemic.
  • Endemism: When countries finally have control over a virus, it could be endemism. Then the virus is there, and sometimes it’s more common. For example, consider the winter flu.

Source: NU