Increase in hospitalization cases due to Influenza

ORANJESTAD – In the first weeks of 2019 the Department of Public Health was informed of the increase in hospitalization cases due to severe upper respiratory infections.

Ad InfluenzaData received from the Department of Infectious Diseases and analyzed by the Section of Epidemiology and Research indicates that for 2019, 34 persons were hospitalized. This is more than one person per day during the last 4 weeks.

Worldwide there is an increase in cases of Influenza. Lab tests confirmed the presence of Influenza type A and Influenza type B.

In Aruba since January 1 until January 26, the Department of Infectious Diseases of the Department of Public Health received 51 notifications of respiratory infections of which 70.4% tested positive for Influenza. Of these cases, 35 persons were hospitalized of which 64.7% were persons that fall under the risk groups, namely children younger than 5 years and adults older than 60 years.

The most effective method to prevent influenza is to get a flu shot, especially for people that fall under the risk group, people with weak immune systems and health care workers.

Besides the flu shot, one can take the following protective measures:

  • Wash your hands frequently
  • Cover your mouth when coughing with a napkin or sneezing with or do it in your elbow
  • Do not visit public places if you feel sick
  • Avoid direct contact with sick people
  • Avoid touching your eye, nose and mouth

Ad InfluenzaIt is very important for health care providers and emergency departments to report suspicious cases of infectious upper respiratory diseases to the Department of Infectious Diseases, in order for them to determine and anticipate an outbreak, so that they can take the needed measures to prevent it on time.

Department of Public Health advises health care providers to recommend the flu shot to the risk groups. For moer information you may contact the Department of Infectious diseases at 5224221 of dbz@despa.gov.aw.