Wednesday, August 26, 2009

As swine flu deaths climb to 20 in SA, complacency turns to panic

SHOOT: There's a time lag on all the data; which means we only know after people have died and have been tested what the rate is. I think a lot of data is going to go unreported here, either because it is in a rural area or because it is like 'crime statistics' - they just don't look good, and if you keep them down, you get to carry on not doing your job.
clipped from

THE worst predictions of the World Health Organisation (WHO) about swine flu are coming true in South Africa after another two deaths were announced in the country yesterday, taking the toll to 20.

News of the latest deaths came a day after health officials announced the number of fatalities in the country had tripled to 18 in just over a week.

The WHO was last week quoted by international media predicting an “explosion” in swine flu infections globally. And now the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD) in Johannesburg has noted how the H1N1 virus pandemic is spreading around the world with unprecedented speed.

“In past pandemics, influenza viruses have needed more than six months to spread as widely as the new H1N1 virus has spread in less than six weeks,” the NICD said on its website.

More than 5000 people in South Africa have now contracted swine flu since the beginning of July, many of them children, teenagers and young adults.

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