Swine flu spreading faster in Britain than rest of Europe
Swine flu has spread more rapidly in Britain than in the rest of Europe, the World Health Organization has revealed, as the Government faces growing criticism over the country’s preparations for an epidemic.
By Richard Gray
01 Jan 2011
Experts have warned that the surge in flu cases in Britain has still not yet peaked and say the number of cases will continue to rise rapidly over the next two to four weeks.
Figures released by the WHO show the rate of influenza-like illnesses is still low across continental Europe but has risen dramatically in Britain since the flu season began in October. The majority are swine flu cases.
There are currently 738 patients now receiving intensive care treatment for flu in the UK and at least 17 have required life support because their heart and lungs have failed.
The death toll from the virus now sits at 39, with 36 of the victims dying of the H1N1 swine flu virus.
It comes as the Government was forced to defend the country’s level of preparedness against the flu outbreak.