NEWS

Mossialos: No such thing as a ‘Flurona’ virus

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There is no such thing as a “new virus” called Flurona (a portmanteau of Flu + Corona) and no reason to panic, says Elias Mossialos, Professor of Health Policy at the London School of Economics.

“It is not a new virus, but simultaneous infections from the coronavirus and the flu virus. It happened to a pregnant woman in Israel, but it is likely we will see several such cases in many countries,” Mossialos posted to his Facebook account earlier Sunday, in response to reports in several media.

“So, vaccination with the flu vaccine is necessary, especially for our vulnerable compatriots. That’s what health authorities around the world emphasize,” Mossialos added.

There has also been concern about “Delmicron,” again, not a new virus, but a simultaneous infection with both the Delta and Omicron variants of the coronavirus. This is something that needs monitor, said Professor Athanassios Dimopoulos, rector of the University of Athens.

At the same time, Israel’s Health Ministry Director-General Nachman Ash said that a spike in infections with the Omicron variant could lead Israel to herd immunity.

Israel had managed to keep Omicron at bay until the end of December, but daily cases are rising and are expected to reach record heights over the next three weeks.

Israel is lagging behind in its vaccination efforts, with about 63% of its population of 9.3 million vaccinated, due, to a large part, to hesitancy among the Orthodox Jewish and Israeli Arab groups, Israeli media report.