Colds and flu fell during pandemic restrictions
Fewer people had flu or even colds last year, probably due to coronavirus restrictions, according to the CBS Dutch statistics office.
A periodic health study suggested that in 2021, 30% of Dutch people surveyed said they had had a cold, throat or sinus infection or the flu in the previous two months.
In 2018, when this was last measured, 41% of those surveyed said this was the case. The fall was seen across almost all age groups, except in children under four and parents of children up to the age of 12 – who were just as likely to have had a cold or the flu.
Meanwhile, the incidence of various other relatively minor health complaints such as bronchitis or lung infections, ear infections, diarrhoea and vomiting, also dropped in 2021. ‘The drop…was probably linked to restrictions against the spread of the coronavirus,’ the body reported.
Measures such as social distancing, hand washing and face masks, as well as complete lockdowns, are thought to be behind the fall.
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