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COVID, influenza hospitalizations down in N.B.

By Brad Perry Feb 7, 2024 | 6:38 AM

New Brunswick saw a decrease in COVID-19 and influenza hospitalizations during the third week of January, according to Public health data.

The latest Respiratory Watch report showed there were six deaths — four due to COVID and two due to influenza — between Jan. 21 and 27. All of the deaths involved people aged 65 and over.

Public Health reported five deaths the previous week, which included two COVID deaths and three influenza deaths.

There were 48 hospitalizations for both viruses during the most recent week, down from 53 the previous week, and the number of intensive care admissions dropped to one from five.

“Influenza activity decreased … COVID-19 activity remains moderate,” said the weekly report, released Tuesday.

COVID activity

Public Health reported 36 hospitalizations due to COVID during the seven-day period, including one ICU admission. That was compared to 31 hospitalizations and three ICU admissions the previous week.

  • Age 0-4: One hospitalization, zero ICU admissions
  • Age 5-19: Zero hospitalizations and ICU admissions
  • Age 20-44: Four hospitalizations, zero ICU admissions
  • Age 45-64: Seven hospitalizations, zero ICU admissions
  • Age 65+: 24 hospitalizations, one ICU admission

There were 83 confirmed cases, compared to 82 the week before, and the test positivity rate remained stable at seven per cent.

However, the actual number of new cases is likely much higher as PCR tests are only available when requested by a primary care provider.

A total of 10 lab-confirmed outbreaks were declared, including two in nursing homes. That was compared to three lab-confirmed outbreaks the previous week.

Influenza activity

Public Health reported 12 hospitalizations due to influenza during the same period. That was compared to 22 hospitalizations and two ICU admissions the previous week.

  • Age 0-4: One hospitalization, zero ICU admissions
  • Age 5-19: Two hospitalizations, zero ICU admissions
  • Age 20-44: Zero hospitalizations and ICU admissions
  • Age 45-64: One hospitalizations, zero ICU admissions
  • Age 65+: Eight hospitalizations, zero ICU admissions

There were 68 confirmed cases of influenza, down from 94, and the test positivity rate fell to seven per cent from eight per cent.

Five new influenza-like illness outbreaks were reported in New Brunswick schools during that week compared to one the previous week.