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Swine flu cases rise to 30 - director

Staff Writer
The number of confirmed cases of the Pandemic Influenza A (H1N1) has risen to 30 from the 13 reported last month.

Director of Public Health in the Ministry of Health Shaneez El Halabi revealed this in an interview with Mmegi yesterday. "We are having lots of pending results in South Africa where we are sending the specimen for testing," she stated, adding that the laboratory is currently overwhelmed with samples coming from all over the Southern African region.

El Halabi further stated that the World Health Organisation (WHO) has advised them to test only the severe cases or those who are hospitalised as the mild cases can heal without treatment.

"Even if we do not test those mild cases, we will still give them treatment based on the

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clinical symptoms and the level of suspicion that they might be having the virus," she explained.The public health specialist disclosed that they are not lowering their guard.

"The surveillance continues while the public is advised to further take precautions such as staying home when having flu like symptoms and ensuring personal hygiene," El Halabi said.

While there have been no fatalities of the virus in the country, the number of deaths in neighboring South Africa rose to 18 from a total of 5, 000 confirmed cases by Monday.

Symptoms of the virus include fever, sore throat, cough, running nose, chills, headache, body aches and fatigue.



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