More than 100 patients and staff at a Japanese hospital contracted influenza over the the period of Dec. 23 to Dec. 26, according to a Japan Today report.
The influenza outbreak occurred at Shizuoka Saiseikai General Hospital in Shizuoka Prefecture, or more specifically, the fourth floor of the west wing of the hospital.
Two deaths in elderly patients admitted with pneumonia have been linked to the influenza outbreak, hospital officials note.
Of the 103 people affected, 41 were patients and 62 staff. The report states it was due to influenza A; however, it does not specify the influenza strain implicated.
According to data from the Infectious Disease Surveillance Center (IDSC) of National Institute of Infectious Diseases (NIID), influenza has increased significantly in late November and early December. The predominant strain is influenza A H3N2.
Shizuoka Saiseikai General Hospital has stopped further admittances into the fourth floor in an effort to control the outbreak.
Late last month, the Tokyo metropolitan government officials announced an official influenza epidemic alert within the metropolitan area—the first time for such an alert to be issued in November since 2007.
According to the National Center for Infectious Diseases, as of Nov 23, the national average number of infected influenza patients at medical centers across Japan reached 0.94 persons, only .06 points away from meeting epidemic levels