Flu epidemic lingers on

The flu epidemic is lingering into a second month. According to figures from research institute Nivel, last week 139 per 100,000 people went to their doctor with flu-like symptoms. The week before it was 142.

According to Nivel, there seems to be a mismatch between the strain of flu that is currently prevalent and the variation in the flu vaccine. This is why relatively older people who usually get the flu shot are now suffering from flu-like symptoms. The flu is also affecting a lot of young children between the ages of 0 and 4.

A flu epidemic usually lasts about eight weeks, according to Gé Donker, a doctor and flu expert at Nivel. "We are already there," he said. But it seems there's been no decline yet, which means this epidemic is lasting longer than average. It is unclear whether the epidemic peaked this past week. "Often, the peak is around the end of January, but that may just as easily be February this season," said Donker.