UAE health authorities say seasonal flu cases back to pre-pandemic levels

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Health authorities in the United Arab Emirates have said that seasonal flu cases are at an expected level compared to years prior to the COVID-19 pandemic.

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In a statement on Wednesday, Abu Dhabi’s Public Health Center (ADPHC) said that the seasonal flu could cause complications, especially in young children, the elderly, and people suffering from chronic illnesses, the official Emirates News Agency WAM reported.

ADPHC issued a reminder that flu vaccines are available and safe to use. They are said to offer suitable protection against the flu and its potential complications.

The government authority urged all community members to take the flu shot that is widely available across the UAE.

UAE-based doctors told Al Arabiya English last week that people have been so preoccupied with the pandemic over the last couple of years that they have forgotten to take the flu jab ahead of the winter season.

Influenza incidence has declined since the onset of COVID-19 due to preventative measures like face masks and regular sanitization, doctors told Al Arabiya English, but urged people to take the flu shot anyway to ensure protection against any complications that could arise.

COVID-19 and the flu both have common symptoms such as fever, cough, shortness of breath, tiredness, sore throat, runny nose, muscle aches, nausea, and headaches.

The doctors added that both the flu and the coronavirus can both lead to serious complications including pneumonia, acute respiratory distress syndrome, and in severe cases, heart attacks, heart inflammation, brain inflammation, or stroke.

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