More than 1000 schools in Bulgaria closed because of flu epidemics

A total of 1015 schools in Bulgaria are closed because of the declarations of flu epidemics in several parts of the country, the Education Ministry said on January 24.

Of this total, the largest number – close to 200 are in the Plovdiv district.

Declarations of flu epidemics took effect as of January 24 in the districts of Kurdzhali and Vidin, while as of January 25, a flu epidemic has been declared in the municipality of Lukovit.

The flu epidemic declaration in Pernik was withdrawn on January 24, while in Pleven, the rate of flu infections was increasing, to the point that it was expected that a flu epidemic would be declared in Pleven as of January 25.

Since last week, flu epidemics have been declared in more than half the districts in Bulgaria, including Bourgas, Varna, Vidin, Dobrich, Kurdzhali, Pazardzhik, Plovdiv, Silistra, Sliven, Smolyan, Sofia region (not the city), Stara Zagora, Haskovo, Shoumen and Yambol.

In the city of Sofia, the regional health inspectorate said on January 24 that there would be no flu declaration before the end of the week because currently the rate of infection was below the threshold for a declaration.

In Parliament, Bulgaria’s Health Minister Kiril Ananiev told the health committee that 40 000 new anti-flu vaccinations had been imported in the past few days.

“The needs are secured. It is another question whether the vaccines are being sought,” he said.

Ananiev told the committee that measures against the spread of flu included limitations on intakes of patients in non-emergency cases into hospitals, and limitations on maternity checkups.

From next year, anti-flu vaccinations for people older than 65 would be paid for by the ministry, he said.



The Sofia Globe staff

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