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Norwegian hospitals reporting a decrease in the number of infectious diseases this autumn

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  • Norwegian hospitals reporting a decrease in the number of infectious diseases this autumn

    Doctors believe illnesses may have "disappeared" with the swine flu

    Marked decline in the number of cases viral gastroenteritis, HRS Virus (Human respiratory syncytial virus) and the common cold virus

    All the major university hospitals confirms that there are significantly fewer infectious diseases in hospitals now than is usual for this time of year.

    Normally, the waves come every autumn and winter with children who have respiratory infections and severe abdominal infections.

    Illness due to Norovirus (formerly known as Norwalk virus) or Viral gastroenteritis is so common in the University Hospital in Stavanger that the children department at any time the usually have at least five children admitted with the fierce infection.

    But so far this autumn the hospital has had almost no cases.

    Focus on hygiene

    The doctors and nurses believe the focus on hygiene in connection with the swine flu is why.

    - Children have become better to wash their hands, "said chief nurse of children department, Heidi Utvik to

    - We noticed a decline early in the summer. And during autumn we have had far fewer cases than is usual, "she says

    The nurse says that kindergartens and schools almost has been exemplary in terms of hand hygiene.

    - Hand washing is the most basic in terms preventing being infected. It is very gratifying to see that the hygiene measures have worked so well, "said the nurse.

    - Where are the infections?

    At Haukeland University Hospital in Bergen confirms physician Erik Artur Andersen that it also here are far fewer hospital admissions and almost non-existent other infectious diseases at the time.

    - It's very strange. We do not understand how it has been of the infections. Med svineinfluensaen har nesten alle de andre smittsomme sykdommene forsvunnet, sier overlegen til With coming of the swine flu almost all the other infectious diseases have disappeared, says chief physician to

    He says that this comes to the Norovirus (formerly Norwalk virus), but also the so-called HRS virus (Human respiratory syncytial virus), which mainly affects children with respiratory problems at this time of year.

    Common cold virus almost disappeared

    - Common cold virus that uses to ravage in October-November-months, we've hardly seen anything of. We have no explanation for it, "says Andersen.

    Without having to sit on any answer, he believes that people are becoming more aware that it is not infectious to each other. He also points out people's conscious use of hand hygiene.

    - It is just speculation, but certainly it has helped, "he says.

    INCREASED FOCUS ON HYGIENE: More and more use of disinfectants to prevent influenza and other infectious bacteria. The much publicized swine flu has contributed to increased focus on hand hygiene and the sale of hand washing products doubled many tiimes

    Oslo University Hospital, Rikshospitalet, will not currently agree that the trend is due to swine flu, but confirms that there has been little of the same diseases in the Oslo area.

    - We have seen few other infectious diseases in recent months, but I want to emphasize that this varies from year to year. It is too early to say whether this is abnormal or not, says Rikshospitalet Information B?rge Einrem.

    "Interferon" - virus protective substances that are formed in the body

    Microbiologist and physician at St. Olavs Hospital in Trondheim, Svein Arne Nordb?, told that there has been remarkably little abdominal infections.

    - There have been a total domination of the swine flu here as well, "he says.

    When the body is infected by a virus which produced virus protective substance "Interferon". This material protects against other viruses.

    Nordb? does not exclude that this may be the reason why people can escape other infections.

    - This could definitely be a theory, especially when it comes to respiratory infections.

    But also Nordb? points out that it is too early to draw any conclusions.

    - HRS virus can come at different times each year. It is only speculation, but it may appear that people have understood the seriousness when it comes to hygiene, chief physician finishes.

    More people remains at home

    Certainly, it is little doubt that more remains healthy by infection carriers to a greater extent remain at home than before. 23rd October was also a self-certificate law expanded from three to eight days, both on his own and the child's illness.

    Municipal sanitary chief in Granvin in Hordaland, Gunnar Hetland, said earlier this month that one should shy away crowds to avoid infection.

    The doctor went so far as to advise people to either take the car instead of driving to work collectively.

    - A person who is not vaccinated, should the extent that is possible live as a "hermit" to reduce infection risk, Hetland said to Bergens Tidende.

    Health authorities fear that such solo statements from doctors about the swine flu might create fear and chaos among the population. They ask people to try to live as normally as possible and adhering to the advice given by health authorities - like the web page