2021 is shaping up to be the year with the fewest influenza cases for some time.
2021 is shaping up to be the year with the fewest influenza cases for some time.

Why CQ has recorded only one case of influenza this year

Central Queensland has recorded only one case of lab-confirmed influenza this year, compared with an average 115 cases by this time of year from 2016 to 2020.

Other conditions recorded by Central Queensland Hospital and Health Service suggest the same goes for several vaccine-preventable diseases: there have been no recorded cases of mumps or whooping cough, and fewer than usual of rotavirus.

CQHHS Public Health Unit Director Professor Gulam Khandaker explained that residents' behaviour in relation to COVID-19 had kept the numbers of transmittable diseases down.

"Public health measures in place to control the COVID-19 pandemic, such as wider lockdowns, travel restrictions, hygiene etiquette, and physical distancing are likely to have affected the spread of other notifiable diseases," he said.

"There have been drops in notifications of most vaccine-preventable conditions such as influenza, pertussis (whooping cough) and rotavirus.

"There has been no reported notification of dengue fever and malaria which are mostly acquired from overseas travel."

In Central Queensland last year, there were 229 recorded cases of influenza, and in 2019, 3981 cases.

Across all of Queensland this year, there have been 64 cases recorded so far.


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