SUVA: Fiji’s Ministry of Health has noted an increase in cases of flu-like illness at health centers and hospitals and the public was advised Friday to take precautionary measures. The advisory was issued after the diagnosis of two influenza cases at the Colonial War Memorial Hospital’s (CWMH) intensive care unit (ICU) in the capital Suva last week. Fiji’s Permanent Secretary for Health Ministry James Fong said lab testings showed an increase in confirmed cases of flu across the Pacific island country. Fong urged Fijians to seek medical care if they have difficulty in breathing or shortness of breath, pain or heaviness in the chest, inability to stay awake or confusion, or any other symptoms of concern. Before the COVID-19 pandemic, Fiji’s influenza season typically began in January and ended by May or June. However, in 2020 and 2021 there was a marked decrease in the cases of influenza detected, a trend that was also seen in other countries. It is likely that public health and social measures adopted against COVID-19 worked also to contain other respiratory viruses, including flu. Preventative measures for flu are similar to those for COVID-19, Fong said. Fiji’s parents are advised to keep their children hydrated in particular as a means of reducing cold and influenza symptoms and helping them feel better as fevers can result in dehydration. The Ministry of Health is particularly concerned about the care of infants and children, who belong to the flu high-risk group.