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Flu epidemic may make a comeback amid rise in COVID-19 cases in Turkey

Flu epidemic may make a comeback amid rise in COVID-19 cases in Turkey

The pandemic may worsen in the approaching winter months as COVID-19 cases in Turkey continue to rise, amid the risk of a flu epidemic.
Coronavirus Scientific Advisory Board member professor Serap Şimşek Yavuz warned that several respiratory viruses, such as the Rhinovirus, have been detected much earlier this year.
“With the easing of COVID-19 restrictions, the flu epidemic may well make a comeback. This is our biggest concern,” she said.

“Because the immune system of the public will naturally be lower towards the flu virus, risk groups must have their flu jabs administered,” Yavuz added.

“People can have both COVID-19 and flu vaccines at the same time. There is no negative interaction between the two,” she emphasized.

The ratio of fully vaccinated people in Turkey is still at around 50%, and Yavuz underlined that vaccination uptake has slowed down recently.

“We need to have a more active vaccination campaign. If we want to stop the infections, we need to have at least 80% of people immune to COVID-19, be it recovery from infection or vaccination. Only then we can stop the spread,” she insisted. Yavuz called upon people still undecided – despite all scientific evidence – to go get their jabs as soon as possible.

Turkey has so far administered over 113.86 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines since it launched an immunization drive this past January, according to official figures released on Saturday.

More than 54.8 million people have gotten a first dose of a coronavirus vaccine, while around 47.2 million are fully vaccinated, the Health Ministry said.

Turkey has also given third booster shots to more than 10.8 million people.

The ministry also recorded 28,537 new cases, 212 fatalities and 25,611 recoveries over the past 24 hours.

As many as 357,167 virus tests were conducted over the past day, the data showed.