Flu epidemic claims 70 lives to date

Seventy people have died so far in a flu epidemic in the Czech Republic, Novinky.cz reported on Saturday. Of that figure 54 were over the age of 60, Dr. Martina Havlíčková of the National Reference Laboratory for Influenza told the news site. Last year 114 lives were lost in a similar epidemic.

A 1.5 percent rise in the incidence of flu has been recorded in the last week, Dr. Havlíčková said. She said the epidemic was likely to last for several more weeks.

People have been advised to avoid large crowds and devote greater attention to basic hygiene practices.