BAKU, 1 February 2019 – Dr Hande Harmanci, representative of World Health Organization (WHO) in Azerbaijan and Chief Epidemiologist of Azerbaijan Ibadulla Agayev, held a press conference to clarify media reports on the spread of swine flu virus in the country.
WHO representative stated that influenza A (H1N1) pdm09 was a virus causing seasonal flu in the last 10 years. “As every year, this is a seasonal flu, not a swine flu,” said Dr Harmanci.
It should be noted that WHO has a global surveillance system for influenza viruses (GISRS) in all member states, including in Azerbaijan. Laboratories operating in in these countries provide entries on viruses. Currently, influenza registered in some countries is considered as a typical seasonal flu in a low and moderate intensity.
Vaccination is considered the best protection against influenza among high-risk groups. This group includes up to five-years-old children, persons over 65 years, pregnant women, people with chronic illnesses and healthcare workers.
To avoid flu, and to prevent the spread of flu, it is recommended to wash hands with soap regularly, to cover mouth and nasals while coughing or sneezing, as well as not to touch eye, nose or mouth, and to isolate when not feeling well at first stage of flu and not to be in close contact with sick people.