Hospitals at home reduce pressure on hospitals because we go into the flu season. "Particularly if [people] do one more thing, and that is to embrace the flu vaccine with confidence".
The officials say some of the preparations include being able to conduct up to 20,000 daily COVID-19 tests, hiring more than 600 additional contact tracers and purchasing more than 1.9 million doses of flu vaccine.
Henry pointed out the southern hemisphere's flu season, which has wound down, was significantly milder than normal and that's partly attributed to their big uptake in the flu vaccine there, in addition to the frequent hand-cleaning and distancing we've grown accustomed to.
"I don't know the history of the patient or whether this was a traveler [who acquired the infection somewhere else], but this is a warning signal", Palese said.
In August 2019, there were 61,000 laboratory confirmed cases of influenza in Australia.
"We absolutely will be pushing for vaccination to keep our population as healthy and strong as we can", she said.
What's even more confusing is that both illnesses can present as asymptomatic, meaning you could be spreading the virus without even knowing.
Two children with influenza A died, and no children with COVID-19 died.
Chafe said he thinks COVID-19 is driving the demand for the shot this year.
Vicari said Covid might have also influenced people to get flu shots.
"We use seat belts and we insure our houses against fire", he said.
That's critical, he said, because normally during the peak flu season from November to February, Windsor Regional's ICU and medical wards are full or overflowing with influenza patients.
The annual outbreak of respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) generally occurs even earlier than the flu, in October or November.
"It's very hazardous to make predictions about influenza", said Dr. William Schaffner, an infectious disease specialist at Vanderbilt University Medical Center.
"Getting sick from the flu could result in hospitalizations at a time when our frontline health workers are doing all they can to help COVID-19 patients recover", according to Palm.
A look at hospitalization numbers show the burden of two viruses at once.
However, Prof Openshaw warns that we can't "assume that what we know about transmission of influenza automatically applies to Covid".
Nineteen hospitals in the province are dedicated COVID-19 sites and will be activated as needed per region.
Schuyler said taking a flu shot is better than nothing. "It's really a ideal storm". The province is already in the process of hiring more than 2,000 staff members at these care facilities and is planning on making flu vaccines available to all residents.
"In this study, we aimed to objectively assess and compare olfactory and gustatory functions in 10 COVID-19 patients, 10 acute cold patients and 10 healthy controls, matched for age and sex, said the study".
Just getting the right diagnosis could be tough, since symptoms for flu and coronavirus are very similar.
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