Swine flu claims 10 victims in Britain

December 13th, 2010 - 2:23 pm ICT by IANS  

London, Dec 13 (IANS) Swine flu, the H1N1 virus behind last year’s global pandemic has reared its head again this winter, claiming 10 lives in Britain, according to the Health Protection Agency (HPA).

Health officials have urged expectant mothers to vaccinate themselves as the virus is more risky for pregnant women than others. The latest vaccine offers protection against H1N1 and two other flu strains.

Apart from pregnant women, normal target groups, the over 65s, people with conditions such as diabetes and health workers have been urged to vaccinate themselves.

This amounts to more than 14 million people, of which pregnant women account for about 500,000 in Britain, reports the Telegraph.

The HPA said that the latest outbreak showed that the effects of flu are not to be underestimated but insisted overall levels were normal for this time of year.

Of 89 cases of flu tested by doctors during the past week, 18 turned out positive.

John Watson, flu expert at the HPA, said: “Flu vaccination offers the best protection for those at high risk from seasonal influenza.”

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