A drop in demand for swine flu antivirals in Worcestershire has led to health chiefs curtailing collection points across the county.
The Antiviral Collection Point (ACP) at Pershore was shut yesterday while three other centres are having their opening hours reduced following a “plateau in swine flu cases”.
Just over 120 courses of antiviral treatment have been distributed from the ACP in Pershore since it opened on August 3.
But health chiefs made the decision after only five to ten courses of medication were issued per day in recent weeks.
Demand at the Worcester, Redditch and Kidderminster ACPs, which opened on July 23, has also reduced with around 150 courses being issued daily across the three centres, down from a high of over 450 last week.
Dr Richard Harling, director of public health for Worcestershire, said: “Nationally the swine flu pandemic appears to have plateaued for the moment.
“The number of cases locally is under constant review and we will extend our hours of the Antiviral Collection Points and open new centres as necessary.
“All of the centres are being manned by our own staff so for the moment it is sensible to allow them to return to their normal duties and minimise disruption to other services.
“Our focus now is on preparing to deal with an increase in the number of cases in the autumn, and on making arrangements to vaccinate the population, starting with the most vulnerable groups.”
Patients with flu-like symptoms who have been given an authorisation number for antivirals by the National Pandemic Flu Service will be able to send their flu friends to pick up medication from the Worcester, Redditch and Kidderminster sites.
Despite having the first major epidemic of swine flu in the country, the West Midlands has seen a slow in case numbers over recent weeks and public health experts have said they believe the worst is over for now.
New admissions of people with swine flu admitted to hospitals was 60 between July 31 and August 6, nearly half the number reported the previous week.
The total number of deaths in the region for people who tested positive for the H1N1 virus stands at seven.
Dr Rashmi Shukla, regional director Public Health, NHS West Midlands, said: “All our surveillance data on the outbreak of swine flu suggests that the number of cases in the West Midlands and nationally is significantly falling. Our GPs are also telling us that they are seeing fewer cases of flu-like illnesses than in previous weeks. This doesn’t mean that we can be complacent. I would urge the public to remain vigilant to the symptoms of swine flu.”