HomeWorldFlu medication runs low as Spain is gripped by surprising second wave

Flu medication runs low as Spain is gripped by surprising second wave


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Date Published: 08/03/2023

This latest strain of influenza is mainly affecting younger teenagers in Spain


This resurgence of influenza B is hitting children under the age of 15 especially hard, although all ages have experienced an upturn, according to the latest data from the Carlos III Health Institute.


And while this second wave isn’t causing any more serious illnesses than the first winter outbreak, it is putting a strain on pharmacies, which have sold double the amount of medication compared to this time last year.


Figures from the Health Market Research (HMR) team estimate that by the end of February, chemists had invoiced 23 million euros in drugs associated with flu, such as analgesics and antipyretics, expectorants, cough, throat and nasal decongestion.


Much of this increased pressure is because of the unpredictability of the influenza virus, whose behaviour has changed as a result of anti-Covid measures. While it’s not uncommon for flu to arrive in a second wave, it’s highly unusual for the outbreaks to be so far apart: the first, caused mainly by influenza A, reached its peak in mid-December, and the one that now affects Spain began to grow at the end of January.


The latest data from Carlos III already seems to show the beginning of stabilisation in this flu wave, and researchers believe the next week or so will confirm that the peak is very close.


“But since the flu is unpredictable, we can’t say for sure,” they have warned.



Image: Freepik


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