(CNN) – “Flurona” is a term coined to describe the condition of being infected with Covid-19 and the flu simultaneously.
Nadav Davidovitch, director of the School of Public Health at Ben-Gurion University in Israel, told CNN on Tuesday that because “there is now both very high influenza activity and very high Covid activity, there is the option that someone will be infected with both.”
“I don’t think this is going to be a common situation, but that’s something to consider,” added Davidovitch, who is a member of the Israeli National Advisory Committee on Covid-19.
Lockdowns and mask wearing helped limit the spread of influenza earlier on in the pandemic, but as society opens up, cases are expected to rise.
“It’s interesting that after you have a year with a very, very low or not at all influenza activity, the next year because people were less exposed, it makes them more vulnerable,” Davidovitch said.
He added that for those without underlying health conditions who have been vaccinated for both influenza and Covid-19, these viruses are unlikely to have a “major effect on the individual.”
Both are spread through droplets and aerosols when an infected person breathes, speaks, coughs or sneezes.
Being infected with Covid-19 and the flu at the same time could be “catastrophic to your immune system,” Dr. Adrian Burrowes, a family medicine physician and assistant professor of family medicine at the University of Central Florida, told CNN in September.
“I do believe you’re going to see coinfection with flu and coronavirus. And I do believe you’re going to see a higher rate of mortality as a result of that,” Burrowes said at the time.
Davidovitch said there was not enough data to suggest if rates of hospitalization are higher for those infected with both the flu and Covid-19, compared to if someone had just one of the viruses.