29/04/2009

Ten Cases Of 'Swine Flu' Test Negative

Eleven possible cases of swine flu - identified as a cross-over infection from pigs to humans - have been investigated in Northern Ireland but 10 have already tested negative, while the result from the outstanding case is expected later.

The acting Chief Medical Officer, Dr Liz Mitchell has confirmed the individuals tested in NI had recently travelled back from suspected areas.

She said that an eleventh suspected case is currently under examination and results are due later on Wednesday.

The Northern Ireland cases follow four people in the Irish Republic also being given the all-clear after being tested for the deadly virus.

Today, it has been revealed that Government leaflets about the outbreak of swine flu are to be delivered to every household in the UK.

It comes after the authorities in Northern Ireland said they had set up at an emergency control centre at Stormont to deal with an outbreak.
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NI Health Minister Michael McGimpsey said leaflets were being printed for distribution at ports, airports and to the general public.

He also said that basic hygiene was effective in halting the spread of the flu.

Measures such as thorough hand-washing and using tissues when coughing and sneezing could curb infection, he insisted.

Mr McGimpsey said there were no confirmed cases of swine flu in Northern Ireland or in the Republic, but there are two in Scotland and as yet, none in England or Wales.

Iain and Dawn Askham had recently returned from honeymoon in Mexico and are being treated in isolation in a hospital in Lanarkshire.

In Mexico, the source of the outbreak, it has now emerged that only seven of the 159 flu-like deaths that have taken place to date have in fact been from Swine Flu - rather they were from unrelated conditions.

See: Mexico Confirms Just Seven Deaths From Swine Flu

(BMcC/JM)

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