Health Minister: Flu Cases Up But No Grounds for Panic

Davit Sergeenko, Minister of Internally Displaced Persons from the Occupied Territories, Labor, Health and Social Affairs of Georgia, says that flu cases are "quite high" but there is "no ground for panic."

“We have no flu epidemic, we have increased morbidity. One of the few directions is the timely start of antiviral treatment,” he stated.

The Minister noted that pregnant and socially vulnerable people will get anti-flu medicine Tamiflu for free.

“Socially vulnerable and pregnant women can apply for public health district departments, where they will receive free medicaments,” he added.

Tamiflu (Oseltamivir) is used to treat symptoms caused by the flu virus (influenza). It helps make the symptoms, such as stuffy nose, cough, sore throat, fever/chills, aches and tiredness less severe and shortens the recovery time by 1-2 days.

This medication may also be used to prevent the flu if you have been exposed to someone who already has the flu, such as a sick household member, or if there is a flu outbreak in the community.

The medication works by stopping the flu virus from growing and is not a substitute for the flu vaccine.

Sergeenko stated that if other people apart from pregnant women and socially vulnerable need Tamiflu medication at the hospital, it is covered by the state Universal Healthcare Program.

Amiran Gamkrelidze, Director General of the National Center for Disease Control (NCDC) and Public Health of Georgia, stated that the number of flu-related deaths in Georgia has reached 6.

“There are 277 cases per 100,000 people. We are far from the peak for the time being as the epidemic limit for our country is 500 cases per 100,000,” he explained.

He said 95% of the cases are H1N1, so-called swine flu.

“Therefore, we call on the population get their influenza vaccine for preventing influenza,” NCDC Director stressed.

By Thea Morrison

Related stories:

Woman Dies from Influenza in Gori

2 Die from H1N1 in Georgia

Flu Continues to Spread in Georgia



04 January 2019 02:39