Health Ministry downplays effects of flu epidemic in the U.S.
Costa Rican Health Ministry officials ruled out the possibility that a flu outbreak in the United States could cause problems in Costa Rica, saying the country is prepared for the seasonal virus.
A public health emergency was issued in the U.S. cities of New York and Boston in recent weeks, as more than 19,000 flu cases were registered, resulting in the deaths of at least 20 children so far.
The ministry in December started a vaccination campaign against influenza, targeting high-risk people, including the elderly, people with chronic diseases and children.
Health Vice Minister Adolfo Ortiz said that although there is an increase in severe cases, “there is a normal behavior of the disease. All severe cases were submitted for laboratory analysis and are being monitored,” he said in a release.
In 2012, 10 people were killed by respiratory viruses in Costa Rica, most of them by influenza and the H3N2 virus.
The Social Security System, or Caja, in December distribuited 378,200 doses of the vaccine at a cost of $1.3 million. The vaccines are being applied for free at Caja medical centers as part as the National Vaccination Program that runs for three months until February.
You may be interested
Costa Rican entrepreneur launches swimwear line to empower womenElizabeth Lang - May 24, 2018
María Luisa Mendiola is a young Costa Rican woman living in New York who’s all about creating change in everything…
Costa Rica dismantles international drug trafficking ringAFP - May 24, 2018
Costa Rican authorities dismantled an international cocaine trafficking ring that used fishing boats on the country's southern Pacific coast. The…
Costa Rica’s snakebite research pioneers save lives worldwideMitzi Stark - May 23, 2018
The Clodomiro Picado Institute is spread along the main road of Dulce Nombre de Coronado, northeast of San José. Its…