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Federal Officials warn of “Twindemic” as Flu numbers expected to bounce back this year

Published: Dec. 29, 2021 at 4:29 PM EST
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PRESQUE ISLE, Maine (WAGM) - Federal Health Officials are warning of what they are calling a “Twindemic”. Newssource 8′s Corey Bouchard has the story.

Jessica St.Peter - Director of Quality/RN - AR GOULD " The last flu season that we had was a historically low impact to our population and because of that we are at a greater risk of flu activity this year.”

Jessica St.Peter is the Director of Quality at AR Gould. she says the reason why there were less flu cases than normal last year is because of pandemic precations we were already taking.

” When you think about the landscape last year there were a lot of individuals doing remote work, there were people not going into stores as frequently, there were limits on capacity for how many people can be in public settings in public buildings...and then as i mentioned you had that increased interest last year for people getting flu vaccines so that helped, that was an increased layer of protection in the population....So the things that we use to prevent covid like social distancing, handwashing, masking. all of those things help us to reduce the spread of flu and reduce the spread of COVID”

St.Peter says that the prediction from health officials that we could have much higher cases of flu this year worries her, especially because of the COVID Transmission Rate currently in Aroostook County.

” When you think about what that could mean for our patients, for our communites, our healthcare systems, that could cause us to have higher numbers than we have historically seen.”

St.Peter adds that certain people will be at higher risk for the flu, and she hopes they follow some precautions to stay safe.

”We want to ensure that folks who are at the highest risk for severe complications such as those who are elderly or very young, those who are pregnant, those who have conditions such as hypertension, diabetes, those individuals are gonna be at higher risk for complications of the flu so flu vaccination is going to be even more important for those groups,as well as following precations like washing your hands, covering coughs and sneezes, being sure not to touch your eyes, nose, mouth, because those are areas that are easier to contract the virus and make you succesptible to it”

Corey Bouchard, Newssource 8

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