Will there be a twindemic? Fighting COVID-19 is fighting the flu

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The flu has its own dangers. According to the Public Health Agency of Canada, there is an average of about 12,200 hospitalizations and 3,500 flu-related deaths each year. Based on laboratory testing, there were 42,541 cases of seasonal flu in 2019-2020.

“Everyone should get their flu shot this year,” Wilson said. “It is obvious.”

Concern about a possible twindemia is not exaggerated, said epidemiologist Dr Jeff Kwong.

“Most healthcare workers would say we can barely manage during a normal flu season. We are still on the verge of collapse. If you add COVID, we’ve got big problems, ”said Kwong, a professor at the University of Toronto’s Dalla Lana School of Public Health.

“The biggest problem with the way we think about the flu is that there are other respiratory viruses around,” he said. “The flu is a bunch of viruses with a bunch of different presentations. They are indistinguishable without laboratory tests. ”

If people let their guard down on measures to prevent the transmission of COVID-19, such as wearing masks, physical distancing and hand hygiene, there will be a twindemic, Kwong said.

“If people keep having parties, we’ll get the flu. But, if you can control COVID, you can control the flu. ”

It is also possible, but rare, to be infected with the flu and COVID-19 at the same time. A study published in June in the Journal of Medical Virology found that among 1,103 patients diagnosed with COVID-19 at three hospitals in Istanbul, Turkey, six were also diagnosed as also being infected with the flu. Co-infected patients have been reported in China, Germany, Iran, Japan, Spain and the United States.

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