Friday, June 21, 2024

A wave of Flu infections affecting San Pedro residents


San Pedro Town has been experiencing a wave of acute respiratory infections, which are suspected to be the flu. Speculated to be the COVID-19 virus, reports from the Public Health Inspector’s office at the Dr. Otto Rodriguez San Pedro Polyclinic II suggest that most cases are due to the common seasonal flu. As a precaution, the public is encouraged to wash their hands frequently and wear face masks, particularly in crowded places.

Flu vaccines available at Dr. Otto Rodriguez San Pedro Polyclinic II

Public Health Inspector Zane Bradley has reported a significant increase in flu cases, with many students and adults required to stay home for up to two weeks. Bradley encourages using face masks until the symptoms subside and emphasizes the importance of frequent handwashing as the first line of defense against spreading illnesses. The flu spreads quickly between people when they cough or sneeze. Symptoms include acute onset of fever, cough, sore throat, body aches, and fatigue. People with the flu should rest and drink plenty of liquids. Most people will recover on their own within a week. However, some patients who recover from the flu symptoms may still experience a cough, for which face masks are recommended.

Practice frequent handwashing

Although most cases are not COVID-19, the Ministry of Health and Wellness (MoHW) confirmed that the country was infected with the Omicron and Omicron BA.5 sub-variant variants between 2022 and 2023. While the AstraZeneca vaccine was made available during the height of the COVID pandemic in 2020, updated vaccines like Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, or Novavax are now available for better protection against the virus. It is unclear if these vaccines are available in Belize, but flu vaccines are available at the polyclinic during weekdays from 8AM to noon. The flu vaccine is recommended for pregnant women, children aged six months to five years, people over age 65, people with chronic medical conditions, and health and public workers. The polyclinic continues to test for COVID-19 as well.

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