Nottinghamshire is now in the ‘red zone’ of a winter flu bug hitting the UK, according to a survey which tracks the virus.
The flu strain H3N2, known as ‘Aussie Flu’ is currently sweeping in the country, with sufferers experiencing symptoms similar to those caused by normal flu but are more severe.
Reports to Flu Survey, a site used by researchers at Public Health England to monitor flu trends in the UK, have seen Nottinghamshire move into the red zone, meaning the county has seen a higher number of flu reports than the national average.
Only a handful of counties in the UK have now reported few or no cases of Aussie flu, so called because the same strain caused the worst winter flu season in a decade last year.
Symptoms of the flu include headache, fever, cough, sore throat, aching muscles and joints. the Department of Health saying it occurs most often in winter and peaks between January and March.
The NHS issued advice to only see your GP if your symptoms don’t improve after seven days, you’re worried about your child’s symptoms, 65 or over, you’re pregnant, have a long-term medical condition or a weakened immune system.
Public Health England issued a health warning and advice ahead of a wave of cold weather on Friday (January 5), which led to a spike in hospital admissions over the weekend.
Dr Thomas Waite of the PHE Extreme events team said: “As temperatures drop it’s really important to think about what you can do to prepare for the cold and protect more vulnerable friends and family from the ill-effects of the cold.
“Ensure they wear lots of thin layers, have plenty of warm food and drinks to stay warm and check weather forecasts before heading out.
“Also wear shoes with a good, slip-resistant grip to prevent any accidental falls and when indoors, stay warm and heat homes to at least 18 degrees Celsius.
“This advice is important for everyone but particularly important if anyone in the home is very young, 65 or over or has a long term health condition.”