24 people have died from flu so far this season, according to the latest figures from the Health Service Executive

Dr Kevin Kelleher, the HSE’s Assistant National Director of public health, said the majority of those would have had underlying health problems, but some did not.

He said the deaths took place across all age groups but he did not give any more details of exact ages.

He said their latest information suggests flu cases have either peaked last week or will peak this week.

Dr Kelleher also said that this flu season, which began before Christmas, is the fifth worst in 17 years.

He also said there is an increase in activity in hospitals and ICU admissions because of flu, with  around 1,000 hospital admissions including some children.