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Winter flu deaths reach 112

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Flu claimed the lives of 112 people in the UK since September, according to government data.

The number, which includes 15 children under the age of 14, has more than doubled since last week, when 50 people died due to the disease.

Information on 81 deaths was made available, showing that 63 of the victims were in at-risk groups for flu.

A total of 661 people are in critical care in England, compared with last week’s 783 figure.

On Thursday a woman whose three-year-old daughter Lana was killed by flu said the government needs to look again at its vaccination policy.

Gemma Ameen and husband Zana, a nurse and a doctor, switched off their daughter’s life support just two days after she had caught an apparent cold on Christmas Eve.

The couple had taken their daughter to Stepping Hill Hospital in Stockport, Greater Manchester, where she was diagnosed with an infection and sent home. Later the same day Lana had several fits and was taken back to hospital.

Lana was eventually transferred to Alder Hey Hospital in Liverpool but died on Boxing Day.

The Department of Health insisted independent expert advice was “absolutely clear” that children who do not have risk factors should not be vaccinated. That advice was reviewed recently and the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation did not change its recommendation.

 

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