People are being told to prepare for the bad season of influenza as WA has recorded the lowest daily increase in COVID-19 infections over a month (further evidence that the state is beyond the worst of the Omicron wave). increase.
The number of new COVID cases decreased to 6242 on Saturday, the smallest increase since May 2.
Dr. Andrew Miller, a spokesman for AMA (WA), agreed that the current Omicron wave is declining, but warned that more waves are inevitable.
“Currently, we are expected to be on a downtrend,” he said.
After the trough, he said, infections increased as people became less vigilant and public health measures were eased.
“The virus then mutates slightly to avoid the vaccine, making it more contagious, and then begins to turn up again.”
He said this was in line with what epidemiologists had predicted.
On Saturday, WA Health reported 10 new deaths dating back to May 13. They included more than 100 women and four women in their 90s. Two men and one woman in their 80s. And two women in their 70s.
At 8 pm on Friday, there were 278 COVID-19 infected people in a Western Australian hospital, 11 of whom were in the intensive care unit. The total number of active cases in the state was 44,731, down from 62,604 a week ago.
Due to the downward slope of the Omicron wave, the state government is urging people to prepare for the recurrence of the flu.
During the first two days of June, 32,000 Western Australians took advantage of free vaccinations that lasted until the end of the month.
“As of 5 pm Thursday, Western Australia received 694,399 influenza vaccines, but in 2021, only 627,072 doses,” said a state government spokesman.
Due to measures to minimize the spread of COVID-19, influenza has been virtually non-existent for two years.
“But with interstate and international travel open, our health authorities predict more cases of influenza this year,” said a state government spokesman.
“We are closely watching the high incidence of influenza between states and abroad as the start of the WA influenza season tends to lag behind other states, so that people can protect themselves and others. It is very important to get the flu vaccine now. “
Dr. Miller said how people carried it depends on the severity of the circulating influenza virus and what they did to protect themselves.
“People are expected to be a little more vulnerable because there have been no infections within the community (for the last two years),” he said. “The level of immunity may be a little lower than normal just because it is not circulating.
“Whether this year’s flu is really aggressive depends on the variant.”
“On the plus side, I think people know what it takes to prevent the capture of these aerial viruses … masks and ventilation are ways to prevent it. Hopefully geriatric care facilities and so on. In some places, it will be less popular (knowledge).
“It’s going to be the flu season, but I don’t think it’s going to be a catastrophic season, especially compared to COVID.”
Dr. Miller believed that the government’s June free jab initiative was partially motivated by the potential impact of influenza on stress and buckling health care systems.
“They don’t have the ability to get some (extra) respiratory illness,” he said. “The workforce is very burned out, tired, and often relies on those who have left and are still present.”
“Despite doing fairly reasonable practices with COVID, their nightmare has to get 30 or 40 flu cases (requiring hospitalization) that disrupt the entire system and cancel selective surgery. It shouldn’t be. “
Premier of Western Australia, Mark Magawan, called on everyone to get a free flu shot this month, reminding Western Australia that about 100 people died of the flu during the 2018-19 season.
WA Health urged people to maintain good hygiene practices in the state during a pandemic.
“This includes staying at home when sick, wearing a mask, washing hands, and getting vaccinated,” said a spokesman.
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