Medical consultations for flu-like symptoms have increased steadily in recent weeks, leading Belgium to approach the threshold that constitutes one of Conditions to speak of a flu epidemic.
To speak officially of a flu epidemic, the threshold of 144 consultations per 100,000 inhabitants must be exceeded for at least two consecutive weeks, and at least 20% of the analyzed respiratory specimens should be positive. The second condition is already reached.
Regarding the number of medical consultations for flu-like symptoms, “in all likelihood”, the epidemic threshold “should be achieved or exceeded over the next seven days,” said Dr. Isabelle Thomas, virologist at the ISP.
Among the samples tested positive for influenza, the influenza virus during the week of January 18 to 24, are the B strain viruses predominate (43% of strains B, 14% strains A). “It is at this stage too early to assess the effectiveness of trivalent and quadrivalent vaccines influenza season 2015-2016,” said the ISP, which recalls some basic rules to avoid passing the virus: Wash your hands regularly with soap, avoid exits and contacts if you are sick, coughing into a tissue or the crook of his arm.