Hungary’s chief epidemiologist, János Szlávik said getting vaccinated against the flu is important during the novel coronavirus pandemic because it can protect at-risk groups against at least one of the diseases.
Szlávik, from the Budapest South Pest Hospital, told public broadcaster Kossuth Rádió that the flu season is approaching and at-risk groups are the same as for the new virus, such as the elderly, people with underlying medical conditions and those that recently had an operation.
“The flu vaccine is already available so it is important to address people who usually do not get it but are in a potentially vulnerable group,” he said. The flu shot is also important to doctors because it can help them factor out the flu when formulating a diagnosis, he added.
Szlávik said waste water samples taken around Hungary indicated that the number of coronavirus infections could be on the rise in the next 4-10 days. He added that it was wrong to assume that the virus is not a threat to younger people because they too could end up in intensive care and potentially die from it. Coronavirus mortality rates are much higher than that of the flu, Szlávik added.
Hungary’s coronavirus death toll reached 625 on Monday after another COVID-19 patient died.
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