NHS claimed that COVID-19 could combine with the flu this coming winter. The National Health Service added that the combination of the two viruses could create a new strain.
However, the health agency did not confirm if it is more infectious than the newest COVID-19 Delta strain. One of the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation members, Professor Adam Finn, claimed that if the novel coronavirus and the flu join together, the United Kingdom could suffer from a larger epidemic.
He added that the expected large-scale flu outbreak could have a massive impact since people are lacking immunity because of the safety restrictions implemented by the U.K. government back in 2020.
Thanks to the medical expert's warning about the upcoming large epidemic, the United Kingdom government decided to release a new flu vaccination program.
The new plan is expected to be unveiled in the following days.
NHS Claims New Large Epidemic Could Appear
According to Express UK's latest report, Finn explained that for the past few years, influenza epidemics are always appearing. However, 2020's case was different since almost all government agencies were focused on the rising COVID-19 pandemic.
"The restrictions there were in place before and after the second wave was sufficient to stop influenza from being passed around. As a result, we are actually concerned we may see a much bigger epidemic of influenza this year simply because all the immunity that epidemic would have created doesn't exist," said the medical scientist.
"So then if you have the coincidence of a big flu epidemic and a further wave of Covid that doubles the pressure of the health service," he added.
On the other hand, Finn also compared the flu and COVID-19, claiming that influenza is a more serious illness compared to the novel coronavirus. He added that if the flu combines with COVID-19, a deadlier disease could develop and spread across the United Kingdom, and possibly in nearby countries as well.
He advised the public to continue wearing face masks and other PPEs even if they are already vaccinated. The experts added that this is currently essential to protect people around them.
UK Now Wants To Conduct Flu Tests
Since NHS released a warning, the U.K. government officials announced that they are already planning to conduct some flu medical tests. They confirmed these medical activities after concerns about the possible COVID-19 and flu combination started to make some noise, as reported by CNBC.
The country is expected to lift its COVID-19 restrictions this coming July 19. However, it seems like their plan is about to change, especially since the daily infection cases are still rising.
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Written by: Griffin Davis