There has been a significant increase in the number of confirmed cases of the flu in the North West this winter season.
The HSE says 154 cases have been confirmed in the last 3 weeks, compared to 5 for the same period in 2018.
The HSE Health Protection Surveillance Centre are asking the public to help prevent the spread of flu, as the disease is now actively circulating in the community.
Dr Anthony Breslin, Specialist in Public Health Medicine, HSE North West is reporting that there has been a very significant number of flu case in the North West this year.
There has been 154 cases of confirmed flu in the last 3 weeks, an increase of 2980% on the same period last year with about 70 of those cases requiring hospital care.
Dr Breslin says the flu is affecting mainly young children and older adults as well as some pregnant women.
Over 60% of flu cases are reported to have had no flu vaccine.
If you have the flu you are advised that you can seek advice from your local pharmacy or your GP.
Anyone who gets flu should stay at home, rest, drink plenty of fluids and use over-the-counter remedies like paracetamol to ease symptoms and if you need to visit your GP or the Emergency Department, you are requested to phone ahead to explain that you might have flu.