Brace yourself for the influenza seasonComments Off on Brace yourself for the influenza season

The winter is coming with a new influenza season. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), influenza may infect up to 20% of the population during the winter months.
The Standing Committee of European Doctors (CPME) wants to remind that the most effective way to prevent the disease is vaccination. Also, good hand and respiratory hygiene are important. WHO recommends annual influenza vaccination for pregnant women, children aged between 6 months to 5 years, elderly individuals (aged more than 65 years), individuals with chronic medical conditions, and naturally health-care workers. Therefore, also CPME encourages all its members and other healthcare professionals to ensure they themselves are vaccinated against seasonal influenza.
The severity of the disease varies. However, every year there are several avoidable deaths from influenza. According to the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), last winter, the influenza activity started to increase in northern and south-western Europe in mid-December and the peak in activity was in early January in south-western Europe and in mid-February in northern Europe. In some countries in Eastern Europe, activity did not peak until mid-March.
This week has been the annual Flu Awareness Week all over Europe to raise awareness of the importance of vaccination for people’s health and well-being and to increase the uptake of seasonal influenza vaccination of people with underlying risk factors. Please find more information about the campaign on the ECDC website.