As the winter months continue throughout this year’s flu season, ‘flurona’ is something that should be kept on our radar. The omicron variant has been dominating every headline across the world, but Israel just announced their first case of flurona on Tuesday, Jan. 4.
Flurona is when someone is infected with both influenza and covid at the same time. Both are respiratory diseases that are spread through droplets and aerosols from those infected when they cough, sneeze, talk, etc, and can cause similar symptoms.
Last year while we were on lockdown, we barely saw any cases of influenza in general, but now that society is opening up they’re worried about a potential strain on the healthcare system and rising mortality.
Not having enough data, there isn’t a way to determine if most of the patients that have been hospitalized were positive for both the flu and covid, or if it’s one or the other. Because flu season was almost nonexistent last year with a very low number of infections, this year people are more vulnerable to the virus.
Nadav Davidovitch, director of the School of Public Health at Ben-Gurion University in Israel, has shared that being vaccinated for both influenza and covid will make those without underlying health conditions unlikely to suffer major effects if they get flurona.
The individual in Israel who was infected was a 30 year old, unvaccinated, pregnant woman but has since been discharged and is said to be in good condition.
The best thing we can do is continue to do our best to prevent the spread of illness by washing our hands, practicing social distancing, and staying home when you are sick. Being stuck inside and in the cold is a recipe for getting sick, so a good suggestion is to open a window or door to get some fresh air and ventilation in your home.