Monday, October 7, 2013

H1N1 Singapore cases reported

At least 6 cases of H1N1 flu virus is reported among pre-schoolers in two Pasir Ris kindergardens according to Singapore Health Ministry. Influenza A virus subtype H1N1 was the most common cause of human influenza (flu) in 2009. A new strain of swine-origin H1N1, usually called in media as swine flu, have  created a pandemic and had caused about 17,000 deaths by the start of 2010. In Singapore at least 30 people here have died from it.

“The Ministry of Health has been notified of this incident and is working with the relevant parties for investigations" said a spokesperson from the Ministry of Health (MOH).

Later MOH have published a press release about these H1N1 Singapore cases. In the press release named Cluster of Influenza Cases at Childcare Centre MOH said that they have been notified of a cluster of 8 children (out of an enrolment of 56) with influenza and another 10 children with influenza-like symptoms, at ACES Montessori Kidz (Downtown East):
Two children were admitted for observation and discharged two days later. The other 16 children either self-medicated or received outpatient medical treatment. The children are currently recovering. MOH has provided advice to the centre on infection control measures. 
The public should not be alarmed. Influenza is generally a mild illness that results in full recovery, though there may sometimes be complications such as pneumonia. There are three seasonal influenza strains that circulate year-round in Singapore – influenza A (H1N1), influenza A (H3N2) and influenza B. These strains are also circulating throughout the world. There has been no evidence to suggest an increase in virulence of the influenza A(H1N1) virus.
According to Raffles Medical Group web page on H1N1[1], symptoms of influenza infection are:
  • Abrupt onset of high fever usually greater than 38 degree Celsius with chills
  • Accompanied with dry coughing and may have other respiratory tract infection symptoms such as running nose, sore throat, sneezing
  • Associated with body aching, headache, malaise and breathlessness
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