Face Masks may Return

Face Masks may Return

Photo: https://www.m24.ru/

With the arrival of cold weather, the number of Russians who fell ill with influenza and acute respiratory viral infections increased noteworthily. According to the Influenza Institute, as Izvestia reports, swine flu, namely A (H1N1,) is mostly recorded among the strains.

Experts warn that this variant of influenza is capable of changing, and the WHO reported its ability to spread rapidly even before the COVID-19 pandemic.

The weekly bulletin of the Smorodintsev Research Institute of Influenza, according to media reports, published data showing that from November 21 to 27 in Russia influenza epidemiological thresholds were already exceeded by 20% in 37 cities, while a week earlier such data were recorded in 25 cities. Most of the cases were recorded in Moscow and St. Petersburg, as well as in large cities such as Yekaterinburg, Saratov, Kemerovo, Vladivostok, Orenburg, Kursk and others. Swine flu has been registered in 74 regions of the country.

Four types of influenza virus are currently circulating in Russia (two subtypes A and B each). According to Marina Malinnikova, head of the virology department at RMANPO of the Russian Ministry of Health, as reported by Izvestia, the influenza A subtype is one of the most variable. This flu virus is also called swine flu and was recorded in 2009.

This type of virus contains several components of the influenza virus of pigs, birds and humans. In 2019, WHO experts warned that this type of flu is changing and it might cause a pandemic.

In addition, according to doctors, there have been already cases of influenza B infection so far, although it usually appeared only in late winter and in March. Meanwhile, in winter there are cases of acute respiratory viral infections. The risk group for the incidence of influenza and acute respiratory viral infections, as noted by infectious disease specialists, primarily includes children, pregnant women, employees of health facilities, people with chronic diseases, as well as senior citizens.

Mikhail Bolkov, a researcher of the Institute of Immunology and Physiology of the Urals Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences, thinks that the number of people who fall ill will only increase in the future. The pressure exerted on the human population by the novel coronavirus has subsided, and now there is a sharp increase in the incidence of acute respiratory viral infections. Since many Russians have not been vaccinated, an increase in the incidence of influenza and acute respiratory viral infections is being recorded, due to which in many Russian regions school students are transferred to distance learning. Thus, some students in the Smolensk Region and Buryatia are taught at home. Meanwhile, in Moscow employees of medical institutions were required to wear masks, and in Chita some schools and kindergartens employees were also advised to use medical masks.

Recall that ARVI and influenza are transmitted from person to person by airborne droplets, and therefore it is necessary to wear a mask primarily to sick people, so as not to be a source of spread of infection. As doctors believe, a healthy person can not use a mask, except in those cases where you have to be in a room with a lot of people. This precautionary measure was recently recommended by Healthcare Minister Mikhail Murashko.

To enhance the protective properties of the mask, you can put a few drops of fir, pine or eucalyptus oil on its inner side. At the same time, doctors emphasize that the treatment should not be carried out only with folk remedies. Of course, drinking tea with ginger, eating citrus fruits and all kinds of spices can boost the immune system, as well as lower the fever, but they cannot replace medical treatment. It is necessary to listen to the doctor's recommendations, especially when serious symptoms are observed.

As Svetlana Smetanina, chief freelance specialist for infectious diseases of the Department of Health of Moscow told TASS in an interview, the city's health care system is well prepared for the growing incidence of flu and acute respiratory viral infections. There are more than 2,000 beds for children infected with infectious diseases in the capital, the number of beds for adults has been also expanded.

According to Yulia Fokina, a physician of the Doctor Ryadom television company, the most effective method of protection against disease is vaccination. The Press Service of the Federal Service for Consumer Rights Protection and Human Welfare, as Izvestia wrote, specified that in Moscow more than 6.9 million people were vaccinated against influenza, which is more than half of the urban population. More than 72.4 million people in the Russian Federation were vaccinated against the flu, which is almost 50%.

According to Pravda.Ru the director of Gamaleya center Alexander Gintsburg announced recently that the scientific center had developed a new vaccine able to protect people from different types of flu for 3-4 years.

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