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Flu season to drop off as schools break for winter

By WANG XIAODONG | China Daily | Updated: 2018-01-10 08:12
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A child with the flu is given an intravenous drip at Beijing Children's Hospital, Jan 10, 2018. [CHEN ZEBING/CHINA DAILY]

Virus more aggressive, but health official says end to peak is in sight

The peak season for flu, which has been spreading more aggressively than previous years, will trail off as usual at the start of the winter school vacation this month, according to a senior health official.

Hospitals and health clinics nationwide have seen increasing numbers of flu patients since the start of winter, Jiao Yahui, deputy head of medical administration and supervision for the National Health and Family Planning Commission, said on Tuesday.

The mainland recorded 326 flu outbreaks-which involve 10 or more cases-in the last week of 2017, with no deaths reported, the latest data from the Chinese National Influenza Center show.

In comparison, 42 flu outbreaks were reported during the last week of 2016, according to figures released earlier by the center.

Feng Zijian, deputy head of Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention, said the dominant flu strain this winter is B/Yamagata, which had not been prevalent for many years.

This has caused a lack of immunity against the strain and made many people vulnerable, which is the major reason for the higher than average flu outbreaks this winter, he said.

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