Health experts urge the public to seek medical advice if symptoms such as fever, cough, sore throat, nasal congestion, muscle or body aches, headache and fatigue persist due to an unusually high rise in influenza.
“Usually there are two peaks of influenza, from November to February and from April to July. According to samples taken last month and the first week of January, the influenza-positive rate was close to 25%…” Dr. Jude Jayamaha, a virologist at the Institute of Medical Research told the media.
In view of this situation, the Health Secretary has instructed the National Influenza Center to improve surveillance of influenza-like diseases in 20 hospitals including Colombo National Hospital, Ragama, Kalubowila, Negombo Hospitals, Ridgeway Arya Children’s Hospital and others.
He said that samples are sent to the National Influenza Laboratory on a daily basis according to the instructions, and the most common type is influenza A. Doctors say pregnant mothers, children under two years old, people aged 60 and over and people with chronic diseases should be very careful about influenza and it is important to wear a face mask whenever possible.