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Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Third meningococcal case confirmed in Australia

Via Xinhua :

" The Australian Queensland authorities on Tuesday confirmed a third meningococcal case in Townsville, the state's second largest city, following the death of a university student recently.

Queensland Health on Tuesday said a young child had fallen ill with the meningococcal virus on July 21 but had since recovered.

However, a spokesman said the case was not linked to the death of James Cook University (JCU) student Gurpreet Singh who contracted meningococcal disease.

The 18-year-old student was found dead in his room on Wednesday.

A second male JCU student is currently in a stable condition in Townsville hospital after being admitted with the virus on Friday.

"Investigations indicate that there is no connection between the child's illness and the recent meningococcal cases at James Cook University in Townsville," Queensland Health Public Health Physician Dr Stephen Donohue said.

Donohue said the child had recovered well and antibiotics had also been provided to people who had close contact with the child.

Donohue urged the community to be "alert but not alarmed" about the meningococcal because the virus was uncommon and not easily spread.

He said 38 cases of the virus had been detected in Queensland in 2011 but Singh was the only person known to have died of the meningococcal virus."

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