Flu has claimed the lives of six more people -- bringing the death toll from the outbreak to 12 so far this winter, new figures revealed yesterday.
However, disease watchdogs said the worst was over and the spread of flu was now declining after the record-breaking peak at the beginning of the year.
Around 5,000 people sought treatment for flu-like symptoms last week, down from over 9,000 in early January when the outbreak at its highest.
Ten of those who died had swine flu and the other two had influenza B. An infant was among those who died.
However, it appears flu has "peaked" for this winter and is in decline, the latest report from the Health Protection Surveillance Centre revealed.
The rate of people complaining of flu-like symptoms who sought help from GPs fell to 110.4 per 100,000, down from 171.4 per 100,000 the previous week.