The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is now recommending that “people planning to travel to Spain, Portugal, and Morocco consider postponing non-essential travel” to those countries. The specific countries were put on the tropical flu alert list. The agency’s action comes after a strain of influenza causing acute respiratory infections in children and adults in Europe began to spread.
According to the US government, people who are sick with the particular virus are at risk of pneumonia and other complications if they don’t have other basic medical tools.
A CDC statement read:
“People may continue to travel to these countries and those who remain in the countries should continue to practice good hygiene to prevent the spread of disease. People may also wish to consider postponing non-essential travel to these countries. People should take precautions to protect themselves and others, including avoiding close contact with sick people, washing hands often, covering coughs and sneezes, and staying home if ill. On an overall basis, flu activity is ongoing. Influenza viruses are a diverse group of very common flu viruses that cause seasonal epidemics around the world. A vaccine developed every year by the US government is the best available way to protect against influenza virus infection. Flu viruses circulate in animals and birds (mostly poultry) as well as domestic and foreign travelers.”
In related CDC business, the government agency’s director said this year’s flu season will likely last longer than normal. “We cannot predict how long the season will last,” CDC Director Dr. Robert Redfield told CNBC. “One thing we know for sure, influenza is getting worse, not better. It remains a year-round issue and we will remain vigilant with surveillance and our response.”