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Thursday, August 23, 2012

Malaysia : Woman, 27, dies of H1N1

Via The Star :

A 27-year-old woman here has become the country's first A(H1N1) influenza-related fatality this year when she succumbed to the virus at the Tuanku Ja'afar Hospital.

The woman, who worked in Singapore, had fallen ill while still in the republic and died just before Hari Raya.
It is learnt that the victim had earlier been asked by her family to return home after she did not recover from fever for several days.
State health director Datuk Dr Zailan Adnan said a post-mortem revealed that she was infected by the virus.
“We have reasons to believe that she may have been infected in the republic. She returned for treatment here but died several days later,” she said.
Those infected will show symptoms such as flu, fever, lethargy, runny nose, cough, sore throat, lack of appetite, vomiting and in some cases, diarrhoea.
Dr Zailan said that despite the woman's death, the people need not panic.
“We have tested her family members and none of them has been infected. The situation is very much under control and it is my hope that no one will spread rumours,” she said.
It is understood that the victim had immediately sought treatment at Tuanku Ja'afar Hospital upon her return from Johor Baru and was prescribed with medication."

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Reports from 3 states suggest more variant H3N2 cases

From CIDRAP :

" Reports from three states today suggested an increase in swine-origin H3N2 influenza activity, with one human case confirmed in Hawaii and suspected human cases cited in connection with county fairs in Ohio and Indiana.

The Hawaii Department of Health (DOH) announced yesterday that a case of variant H3N2 (H2N2v) was confirmed in a Maui resident who had possible exposure to pigs.

In Ohio, state officials said preliminary test results pointed to possible H3N2v in 10 people who had contact with swine at the Butler County Fair, north of Cincinnati. Officials were awaiting further test results from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

And in Indiana—where four cases of H3N2v were reported last week—both people and pigs were being tested in the wake of sickness among pigs in the swine barn at the Monroe County Fair in Bloomington, according to state officials and media reports." 

West Nile virus kills 4 in U.S.

Via Xinhua :

" The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said Wednesday that 241 cases of West Nile virus disease, including four deaths, have been reported in 42 states so far this year.

This is the highest number of cases reported through the end of July since 2004. Almost 80 percent of the cases have been reported from three states - Texas, Mississippi and Oklahoma.

"It is not clear why we are seeing more activity than in recent years," said Marc Fischer, epidemiologist with CDC's Arboviral Diseases Branch. "Regardless of the reasons for the increase, people should be aware of the West Nile virus activity in their area and take action to protect themselves and their family."

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Cambodia starts education campaign, enhanced surveillance for hand, foot and mouth disease

From WHO :

" In response to the outbreak of a severe form of Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease (HFMD), the Ministry of Health (MOH) has instructed all public health facilities to report mild and severe cases of HFMD among children.


Mild cases present with fever and blisters on the hands, feet and/or mouth. Such cases may be managed at home or at health centers or health posts. Most of these cases recover within 7-10 days. However, some children develop a severe disease characterized by fever with neurologic symptoms (such as vomiting, somnolence, convulsions or spasms) or respiratory symptoms (fast breathing or difficulty in breathing). These children have to be referred to hospitals for treatment.
"Children with any of the following signs: very high fever, vomiting, convulsions, spasms or difficulty breathing must be immediately brought to a hospital for diagnosis and treatment," Minister of Health H. E. Mam Bunheng advised parents.
Frequent washing of hands with soap and water, especially after touching any blisters or sores, before preparing food and eating, before feeding young infants, after using toilets and after cleaning children is encouraged.
The Ministry of Health, in collaboration with UNICEF and WHO, is developing information and educational materials to inform the general public about the disease.
The investigation into the recently reported illnesses and deaths in Cambodia concluded that a severe form of hand, foot and mouth disease caused by enterovirus 71 (EV-71) was the cause in majority of the cases reported to the Ministry of Health.
Based on the investigation, a total of 78 cases were identified. These included the initial 62 cases reported by the Kantha Bopha hospital, and cases reported from other hospitals. Of these, the investigation focused on 61 cases that fitted the criteria used (the case definition).
The latest follow-up on these 61 cases indicate that 56 died and three recovered.
During the past week, 533 HFMD cases have been reported to the MOH from 17 of the 24 provinces and there have been nine confirmed cases of severe EV71 infection. Of the nine cases, three died, one recovered, five are still sick."