Aussie flu is now more SEVERE than swine flu – shock expert warning

Wednesday, January 10, 2018
By Paul Martin

AUSSIE flu could be worse than the swine flu outbreak which killed nearly 300,000 people across the world in 2009, doctors fear.

Wed, Jan 10, 2018

The aggressive H3N2 strain of influenza A swept through Australia during its winter causing three times the usual amount of cases.

Some scientists fear H3N2, which has also hit Britain and France, could also prove as deadly as the Hong Kong flu outbreak in 1968 when one million people died.

Peter Horby, professor of emerging infectious diseases and global health at Oxford University, said: “Generally H3N2 tends to be a bit more severe than the H1N1 in 2009.

“The current B virus that’s dominant is not included in the standard vaccine this year – the one given to children.

“The one that’s circulating currently is not in the trivalent vaccine but influenza A is in the vaccine, that’s why people at higher risk should get some protection.

“It’s a mixed bag of viruses, we’ve got H3N2 and B both circulating and causing quite a number of cases each.”

Virologist Professor John Oxford, of Queen Mary University in London, predicted another cold snap will fuel the spread of H3N2 and “kick cases into another orbit” and warned the killer virus spreads much easier in low temperatures.

Forecasters believe the weather will continue as it is currently for the next few days – forcing adults to flock indoors and be surrounded by others.

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