As of Thursday this week, 69 cases of ‘flurona’ had been detected in England, although experts say real toll could be much higher.
Flurona, a combination of covid and flu, made headlines recently when Israeli health officials confirmed that an unvaccinated pregnant woman had tested positive for both diseases simultaneously
Health experts have said that almost a third of Covid patients who require intensive oxygen treatment in hospital are suffering from a secondary infection.
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In 2020 Public Health England said those who caught flu and Covid at the same time were twice as likely to die.
Dr Simon Clarke, a microbiologist based at Reading University told the Daily Mail: “Contracting both viruses simultaneously increases the risk of being seriously ill, but risks can be mitigated by getting vaccinated and boosted against both diseases.”
MSN reports: Nadav Davidovitch, Director of the School of Public Health at Ben-Gurion University in Israel, told CNN that because “there is now both very high influenza activity and very high Covid activity, there is the option that someone will be infected with both.”
“I don’t think this is going to be a common situation, but that’s something to consider,” added Davidovitch.
One explanation for increasing cases of flurona in comparison with last year could be because of relaxing some social distancing and hygiene measures.
While lockdowns prevented the spread of Covid they also prevented the spread of other diseases such as the flu.
Davidovitch also explains that this has reduced people’s immunity to influenza: “It’s interesting that after you have a year with a very, very low or not at all influenza activity, the next year because people were less exposed, it makes them more vulnerable.”
He makes clear that for those who are vaccinated against both diseases, the viruses are unlikely to have a “major effect on the individual.”
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