No announcement yet.

Philippines - Confirmed Cases H1N1 - 2,688 - 9 deaths

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Philippines - Confirmed Cases H1N1 - 2,688 - 9 deaths


    (H1N1) case in RP

    By Anna Valmero
    First Posted 22:26:00 05/21/2009

    Filed Under: Health, Swine Flu

    Most Read
    Other Most Read Stories x

    MANILA, Philippines—(UPDATE) The Department of Health (DoH) confirmed the first case of A(H1N1) influenza in the country Thursday night.

    “The DoH confirms today the first case of A(H1N1) in the Philippines. She is a female traveler who arrived in the country on May 18 from the United States, whose throat specimen tested positive based on results from the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine,” Health Secretary Francisco Duque said in a press conference at the World Health Organization Regional office in Manila.

    According to Dr. Eric Tayag, director for the National Epidemiology Center, the first case is a 10-year-old female, who also visited Canada when she was in the United States.

    Tayag declined to identify the research facility where the girl is being quarantined and treated.

    “I talked with the president and from the tone of her voice she is very concerned. In fact, she gave me the go signal to conduct this press conference,” Duque added.

    The patient is currently being monitored while her immediate household was advised to follow quarantine and social distancing procedures from the DoH, said Duque.

    Despite the index case, Duque said: “There is no community outbreak in the country, measures are being done to prevent transmission including quarantine of immediate household of the first case. The first case is something we have been preparing for and a result of public and private sectors’ effective surveillance system.”

    Health Undersecretary Mario Villaverde said the test results came Thursday afternoon from RITM in Muntinlupa City and the patient was immediately given antiviral Oseltamivir. The first case no longer has fever and cough but still has sore throat, said Villaverde.

    Tayag said specimens from the index case will be sent to a WHO collaborating center in Melbourne as routine procedure for all specimens that will test positive for the novel A(H1N1).

    “The child developed the symptoms a day after arrival, so this is also a call for vigilance on the part of the public that people in the country and incoming travelers from abroad, especially from infected areas, to submit themselves to quarantine screening and continuous monitoring of health, especially body temperature for 10 days, and to report to the DoH any flu-like symptoms,” said Villaverde.

    Villaverde reiterated that the public should observe proper hygiene, strengthen resistance and do social distancing—avoid going to crowded areas if the need is not urgent.

    At this point of one single confirmed case, Vilaverde said, there is no need to postpone the opening of schools in June.

  • #2
    Phillipines: Confirmed cases

    DOH confirms 4 new A(H1N1) cases; public told to stay calm

    05/27/2009 | 05:11 PM

    MANILA, Philippines - The number of Influenza A(H1N1) cases in the Philippines has climbed to six after the Department of Health (DOH) on Wednesday confirmed that four more people contracted the dreaded virus.

    Despite this, DOH Secretary Francisco Duque said there is no reason for the public to panic, noting that the government is still at the top of the situation.

    “There is no need to panic and there is no need to wear facial masks because there is no outbreak in the country. We expect the confirmed cases to rise due to out effective monitoring measures. We have prepared well for this," he said in a press briefing Wednesday afternoon.

    Duque said two of the new cases were a 55-year-old man and a 26-year-old woman, both Filipinos, who had contact with two Taiwanese who tested positive for the disease when they returned to their country after attending a wedding in Zambales province.

    The other two were a 13-year-old boy who came from Hong Kong, a one-year-old girl who traveled from US.

    “There are new confirmed cases of A(H1N1) as of May 27, 2009. These are laboratory confirmed cases," Duque said.

    “The two children have histories of travel to affected countries Hong Kong and the US. Both adults are contacts of the confirmed case from Taiwan," he added.

    The DOH official said the 13-year-old boy had already recovered while the three others are being observed in undisclosed health facilities in the country.

    The announcement came hours after Health Undersecretary Mario Villaverde said that the DOH was already coordinating with Japanese authorities on reports that a Filipino-Japanese boy who returned to Japan contracted the disease while in the Philippines.

    Villaverde said the DOH was still uncertain on how the Filipino-Japanese boy contracted the disease and in what part of the country he stayed in.

    Earlier, the DOH confirmed two cases involving a 10-year-old girl who traveled from the US and Canada and a 50-year-old woman who came from Chicago. The two have already recovered from the illness but remain under quarantine.

    Villaverde advised the public not to panic because the first two A(H1N1) patients only manifested “mild" symptoms.

    [More at the link]


    • #3
      Re: Phillipines: Confirmed cases

      DOH: New A/H1N1 cases not cause for alarm
      by Lyndon Plantilla

      Quezon City (29 May) -- The rising number of Influenza A (H1N1 should not be a cause for alarm, the Department of Health said Friday.

      Health Secretary Francisco T. Duque III said DOH is anticipating the cases to rise as it is happening in many other countries.

      As far the rise in the numbers of cases worldwide, Duque attributed it to the relative ease of transmission of the virus and unrestricted flow of international travelers.

      "Right now, what we're seeing from the behavior of the virus is that most of the cases aremild and are self-limiting. The case fatality rate of H1N1, in fact is less than 1%. Dengue is even more fatal in the country where we now have 57 deaths as of April this year," Duque said, "the most important thing is that we still do not have any severe case or any death."

      He said the there is no indication of a sustained community transmission in the Philippines. Right now there a total of 14 laboratory confirmed Influenza A (H1N1) cases in the country.

      Two of the newly confirmed cases travelled from the United States, a 19 year old female and a 7 year old girl. The other two cases were contacts of the Taiwanese nationals, a 42 year old female and a 20 year old male.

      The four cases, all Filipinos, have started on Oseltamivir and have mild respiratory symptoms. All are Filipinos.

      DOH has been receiving more reports of influenza-like illness (ILI) in the designated referral hospitals with the increased awareness of the public on H1N1 and the intensive tracing of contacts being done by the Department.

      Duque disclosed, however, that DOH may be shifting its control strategy from hospitalization of all cases of H1N1 to outpatient and home management of mild cases including CUOs.

      Meanwhile, high-risk exposure groups showing flu-like symptoms should seek consultation in appropriate healthcare facilities.

      "Based on the global statistics that we have, people with pre-existing conditions such as asthma, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), hypertension, heart disease, diabetes, morbid obesity, immunodeficiencies, as well as pregnant women and young children are at higher risk for developing complications of H1N1. As how we treat and manage ordinary flu, these high-risk patients should not hesitate to go to their doctor once they have the symptoms," Duque said.

      The DOH continues to advocate for preventive public health measures which are the best weapons against H1N1 or any other virus, according to Duque.

      "Proper hand washing, appropriate cough manners and good hygienic practices will be your best defense. Boosting your immune system and taking care of your health will also protect you against the virus," Duque explained.

      Duque reiterated that if you have traveled to an Influenza A(H1N1) affected country or have been exposed to a confirmed case of Influenza A(H1N1) and have fever, cough, sore throat or other flu-like symptoms, please consult a health facility immediately. You can also call the DOH Hotline (02) 711-1001 or 711-1002.

      For other individuals with symptoms of influenza but have no preexisting conditions, the DOH advises them to stay home, take supportive treatment, drink plenty of liquids and get adequate bed rest.

      If symptoms worsen or persist, immediately consult a doctor.

      Duque disclosed that there are 27 new Cases Under Observation (CUO). Since May 1, 2009, the DOH has monitored 211 CUOs.

      Of these, 14 are confirmed cases, 25 still have pending laboratory results, and 172 have been discarded since results are negative for A(H1N1).

      Globally, the World Health Organization has reported a total of 13, 398 cases with 95 deaths in 48 countries as of May 27. No new update has been posted by WHO.


      • #4
        Re: Phillipines - Cases - 21

        (UPDATE) DOH: 5 new A(H1N1) cases in RP; total now at 21

        By Dino Maragay Updated June 01, 2009 02:42 PM

        MANILA, Philippines – Another five new cases of Influenza A(H1N1) were reported by the Department of Health (DOH) today — bringing the total number of flu cases in the country to 21.

        DOH Secretary Francisco Duque III said among the latest patients were a 45-year-old male and a 39-year-old female who arrived from the US.

        According to reports, the DOH has kept track of 315 flu cases, 21 of which were confirmed while 32 remain under observation. The rest were already cleared, reports added.


        • #5
          Re: Phillipines - Cases - 21

          MANILA, June 1 (Xinhua) --

          The Philippine health authorities on Monday confirmed five more cases of the A/H1N1 influenza in the country, bringing the Philippines' tally of this new strain of the flu virus to 21.

          Health Secretary Francisco Duque III told a press conference here that among the five latest cases, three were Filipinos returning from the United States while two other locals might have contracted the virus late last month in a local wedding where two infected patients from Taiwan were present.

          Ages of the latest flu patients range from 19 to 51.

          Duque said the five infected patients remain confined in undisclosed medical facilities while the authorities are tracing their close contacts.

          Since May 1, the Philippine health authorities had put more than 315 people who developed suspected symptoms under observation. A total of 262 patients had been cleared and discharged while 30 others remain quarantined pending laboratory results.

          Duque said seven of the 21 confirmed cases have recovered and show negative results in latest influenza A/H1N1 tests. All of them will be discharged from hospital soon.

          Also on Monday, the Department of Education joined the health authorities in activating an alarm system to monitor possible outbreaks in schools as classes resumed for most Philippine schools after an almost two-month summer break.

          Measures are taken in schools nation-wide to prevent large-scale flu outbreaks, Duque said, and the authorities will only order class suspension once the flu virus spreads in communities.

          Source : Xinhua English


          • #6
            Re: Phillipines - Cases - 29

            A(H1N1) cases in RP jump to 29

            Updated June 04, 2009

            MANILA, Philippines (AP) — Seven new cases of swine flu confirmed Thursday brought to 29 the number of people sickened with the virus in the Philippines, the Department of Health (DOH) said.

            Among them is a 20-year-old Japanese graduate student who came into contact with a fellow Japanese exchange student at Manila's De La Salle University, DOH Secretary Francisco Duque III told reporters.

            The exchange student tested positive 17 days after arriving in Manila on May 12, prompting the suspension of classes at La Salle for 10 days. The university has about 13,000 students.

            The six other patients, including a 33-year-old pregnant woman, are Filipinos who recently visited the US, Duque said.

            The World Health Organization has warned that pregnant women were particularly vulnerable to the virus.

            Duque said all the cases in the Philippines showed only mild symptoms of the flu and 14 have already recovered and were sent home.

            Reacting to a possible declaration by the WHO of a pandemic level 6, Duque said such a move should be made carefully and prudently by considering the severity of the disease, not just the geographic range of the virus.

            "We do not want a disproportionately destructive global scare from a virus that has thus far only shown mild symptoms in most of the cases that we are seeing in affected countries," he said.

            "We do not need this at a time of great economic crisis and uncertainty. But at the same time, we should not also underestimate the potential of the virus to become more severe in the future," he added.

            According to WHO's pandemic criteria, the world is now in phase 5, meaning a global outbreak is imminent. To reach phase 6, the highest level, the agency's definition requires the spread of the disease in a region beyond North America.

            The WHO says the disease has reached 66 countries and infected more than 19,000 people, causing 117 deaths.

            The DOH also said it was looking into the case of a Filipino woman who tested positive for the virus shortly after arriving in Saudi Arabia where she works as a nurse, becoming the first swine flu case in that country.

            “Addressing chronic disease is an issue of human rights – that must be our call to arms"
            Richard Horton, Editor-in-Chief The Lancet

            ~~~~ Twitter:@GertvanderHoek ~~~ ~~~


            • #7
              Re: Phillipines - Cases - 29

              Factbox: A/H1N1 flu cases in Asia-Pacific region

              HONG KONG, June 13 (Xinhua) -- The following is the latest confirmed cases of Influenza A/H1N1 in the Asia-Pacific region on Saturday:

              Japan: 549; Australia: 1,336; South Korea: 55; China: 293 (165 in mainland, 84 in Hong Kong, 44 in Taiwan); New Zealand: 43; the Philippines: 111; Thailand: 106; Malaysia 12; India: 17; Singapore:27; Vietnam: 25; French Polynesia: 1.

              “Addressing chronic disease is an issue of human rights – that must be our call to arms"
              Richard Horton, Editor-in-Chief The Lancet

              ~~~~ Twitter:@GertvanderHoek ~~~ ~~~


              • #8
                Re: Phillipines - Confirmed Cases H1N1 - 147


                DOH: A(H1N1) cases in RP climb further to 147
                06/14/2009 | 05:54 PM

                MANILA, Philippines - The number of people with influenza A(H1N1) virus in the country has climbed to 147 following the government’s confirmation of 36 new cases on Sunday.

                Reports of the National Epidemiology Center (NEC), an attached agency of the Department of Health (DOH), said three of the 36 new cases were foreigners.

                Health Secretary Francisco Duque said they are shifting to a policy of mitigation in response to the decision of the World Health Organization to declare a global A(H1N1) pandemic.

                “A policy of mitigation means that the DOH will shift focus in preparing households and health facilities to respond to the challenge posed by A (H1N1) in anticipation of more confirmed cases," Duque said in a press briefing on Saturday.

                Despite the continuous increase in the number of A(H1N1) cases in the country, the Commission on Education (CHED) it would push through with the opening of classes in the tertiary level on Monday.

                “Di tayo kailangan mag-panic. We are taking all precautions. Kaya umpisa na ang klase, di natin pwedeng i-postpone [We do not need to panic. We are taking all precautions, and we cannot afford to postpone classes anymore]," said CHED chairman Emmanuel Angeles.

                Duque said the mitigation approach also outlines key management imperatives in the areas of activating the command system, surveillance, health facility response, public health interventions and risk communication strategies.

                “I want to make it clear that mitigation will be done in phases and that it will not be applied across the nation completely and instantaneously," he said. - GMANews.TV


                • #9
                  Re: Phillipines - Confirmed Cases H1N1 - 193

                  Philippines confirms first swine flu cluster, cases approaching 200

                  Posted : Mon, 15 Jun 2009

                  Manila - Philippine health authorities on Monday confirmed the first cluster of swine flu cases in the country, where the total number of infections has risen to nearly 200. Health Undersecretary Mario Villaverde said the source of the outbreak in Helera village in Jaen town, Nueva Ecija province, 90 kilometres north of Manila, has not yet been identified.

                  "It is still a big question mark," he said. "We are still trying to find the index case in Helera."

                  He added that the authorities were checking a number of possible sources, including a medical mission group from Manila that visited one week before the first case was reported.

                  Villaverde said 103 residents have manifested flu-like symptoms in Helera, and 20 have been confirmed to be H1N1 infections. Twelve of the confirmed cases are students at an elementary school.

                  Eric Tayag, chief epidemiologist of the Department of Health, said residents of nearby villages were also under observation for flu-like illnesses.

                  "We are monitoring 39 cases in Pakul village and 52 cases in Lambakin village," he said. "These two villages are adjacent to Helera and there are students in the Helera school who live there."

                  Tayag said the department had recorded a total of 193 confirmed cases of H1N1 infections throughout the Philippines.

                  Last week, the World Health Organization declared swine flu a pandemic after 74 countries reported nearly 30,000 cases, with 145 deaths since April.

                  “Addressing chronic disease is an issue of human rights – that must be our call to arms"
                  Richard Horton, Editor-in-Chief The Lancet

                  ~~~~ Twitter:@GertvanderHoek ~~~ ~~~


                  • #10
                    Re: Phillipines - Confirmed Cases H1N1 - 247

                    2 TV employees have H1N1, RP total hits 247

                    By Thea Alberto, Anna Valmero
                    First Posted 15:07:00 06/16/2009

                    Filed Under: Swine Flu, Health, Diseases, Television, Media

                    MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Health (DoH) confirmed on Tuesday 54 new cases of Influenza A(H1N1), including two employees of television network ABS-CBN, bringing the country’s total number of confirmed cases to 247, the highest in Southeast Asia.

                    The two network employees are “safe and recovering,” said ABS-CBN corporate communications head Bong Osorio. He did not give additional details.

                    “The network will continue its normal operations and will continue to promote safety and vigilance against the A(H1N1) virus,” Osorio said in a statement.

                    Osorio said the network has installed hand sanitizers in its buildings, offered flu vaccinations to its employees and their dependents, and conducted random body temperature checks on studio audience and visitors.

                    The 54 A(H1N1) patients also include the six confirmed cases in Makati City – three residents and three students of the Mapua Institute of Technology, where classes were suspended starting Tuesday.

                    No deaths have been reported and 85 of the 247 A(H1N1) patients have been discharged from the hospital, Health Secretary Francisco Duque said.

                    Duque said the rising number of A(H1N1) cases was no cause for alarm because the DoH was simply being “very transparent” in reporting new cases.

                    Last Sunday, the DoH declared a community outbreak of the disease in the farming village of Hilera in Nueva Ecija province north of Manila.

                    “Wearing masks is not advisable means to prevent spread of the H1N1 flu. An infected person should stay at home and observe self quarantine for 10 days and have supportive treatment,” Duque said, as he reiterated the importance of proper hygiene.

                    While the virus was “pretty stable,” Duque said the public must not be complacent because the virus could mutate into a deadlier strain.

                    “Addressing chronic disease is an issue of human rights – that must be our call to arms"
                    Richard Horton, Editor-in-Chief The Lancet

                    ~~~~ Twitter:@GertvanderHoek ~~~ ~~~


                    • #11
                      Re: Phillipines - Confirmed Cases H1N1 - 247

                      June 17, 2009 14:34 PM

                      Over 300 In Philippines Tested Positive For A/H1N1 Flu

                      MANILA, June 17 (Bernama) -- The Philippine health authorities on Wednesday said another 64 people were tested positive for the A/ H1N1 flu in the country, bringing the Philippines' tally of confirmed cases to a staggering 311, China's Xinhua news agency reported.

                      In a press release, Health Secretary Francisco Duque III said, however, 93 patients had fully recovered and more were sent home from hospitals as they exhibited only mild symptoms.

                      "So far the country has no reported case of death or severe illness in all of the 311 documented positive cases," Duque said in the release.

                      Among the latest 64 infected, all but two are Filipinos, with an average age of 18, Duque said.

                      The health department on Monday confirmed a community-based outbreak in a northern town where more than 30 people were infected.

                      “Addressing chronic disease is an issue of human rights – that must be our call to arms"
                      Richard Horton, Editor-in-Chief The Lancet

                      ~~~~ Twitter:@GertvanderHoek ~~~ ~~~


                      • #12
                        Re: Phillipines - Confirmed Cases H1N1 - 344


                        DOH: 33 new H1N1 cases raise total to 344
                        By Sheila Crisostomo Updated June 19, 2009 12:00 AM

                        MANILA, Philippines - The total number of Influenza A(H1N1) cases soared to 344 yesterday after 33 more individuals were confirmed by the Department of Health (DOH) to have been infected.

                        Dr. Lyndon Leesuy, a medical specialist at the DOH’s National Center for Disease Prevention and Control, said two of the 33 patients were foreigners. The youngest patient was aged one while the oldest was 52 years old.

                        “All of the cases are mild in nature. Of the 344 cases, a total of 242 have recovered and were sent home,” he noted in an interview.

                        The DOH confirmed that there were three cases at Miriam College and an unspecified number of cases in Lagro Elementary School, both in Quezon City.

                        A public school in Laguna and a private school in Mandaluyong suspended classes due to the virus.

                        Kenneth Tirado, DepEd Communications Unit head, said that all the cases have already been brought to the attention of the DOH.

                        Dr. Teresita Domalanta, DepEd National Capital Region director, confirmed that the Lourdes School in Mandaluyong had also suspended classes until June 29.

                        Because of these developments, Health Secretary Francisco Duque III said the DOH is set to change protocols in suspending classes next week as a way of adapting to changing situation caused by the virus.

                        Currently, the DOH and the Department of Education (DepEd) implement the no-confirmed-positive-case, no-class-suspension policy on schools.

                        However, classes were suspended at Donya Candelaria Meneses Duque Memorial High School and at St. Mary’s Academy in Hagonoy, Bulacan last week when a number of students showed symptoms of Influenza A(H1N1).

                        Duque said changing protocols in the suspension of classes might revise the response level issued by DepEd last June 1.

                        He said they are closely coordinating with DepEd and the Commission on Higher Education (CHED).

                        He also stressed that if classes at a certain school are suspended due to a confirmed case, it will not be suspended again when another case is monitored.

                        Leesuy announced that the San Lazaro Hospital in Manila, Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center in Cebu and the Lung Center of the Philippines in Quezon City would soon be tapped to conduct laboratory tests on suspected and confirmed cases of A(H1N1).

                        All of these hospitals are under the DOH.

                        This is intended to lighten the load of the DOH-run Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM), which had been solely testing patients since the Philippines recorded its first case on May 21.

                        “The DOH has been assessing the capabilities of these hospitals. We have to make sure that they can do it right, some sort of quality control. To be sure that they can come up with accurate lab results,” he added.

                        At present, only the RITM performs the tests although other hospitals can collect the throat swab samples from suspected and confirmed cases.

                        Leesuy said there are private hospitals that have already offered to help examine specimens but the DOH wants to make sure that they are really competent to do so.

                        The department is also preparing an Administrative Order directing secondary and tertiary private and public hospitals to admit cases.

                        “But we also want to see if they are prepared – if they have isolation rooms and if their staff are trained to handle the patients. We also have to evaluate them,” he added.

                        Pinoy carriers

                        Macau reported its first case courtesy of a Filipino who visited the southern Chinese city.

                        The 27-year-old Filipino was stopped at the former Portuguese colony’s airport with a fever on Wednesday and taken to hospital without entering the city proper, government spokeswoman Elena Au said.

                        He tested positive for the A(H1N1) virus on Thursday, but was in stable condition, Au said.

                        Macau, about an hour away from Hong Kong by ferry, is best known as China’s prime gaming destination, and is the only place in the country that allows casino gambling.

                        Hong Kong has confirmed 172 cases of human swine flu, and last week ordered all the city’s primary schools to shut in a bid to prevent the spread of the virus.

                        Two Filipinos are currently under medical isolation in Hong Kong after health authorities confirmed and classified them as imported A(H1N1) case, according to the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA).

                        Consul General Claro Cristobal of the Philippine Consulate General in Hong Kong reported the new cases of Filipinos infected.

                        Cristobal said the consulate has assigned a consular officer to monitor their health and provide necessary assistance to the two patients.

                        The consulate reiterated its earlier call for Filipinos working or intending to travel to Hong Kong to exercise the highest vigilance against the virus.

                        Four Filipino nationals were among the guests at the Metropark Hotel in Wanchai last month who were covered by the seven-day quarantine imposed by Hong Kong health authorities.

                        Hong Kong’s Department of Health imposed, as a temporary emergency measure, a seven-day quarantine on the first reported case of swine flu at Metropark Hotel last May 1.

                        The patient was a Mexican male who checked in at the hotel but was later brought to the Ruttonjee Hospital after experiencing cough, sore throat and other flu-like symptoms.

                        Among those covered were a Filipina, her Australian husband and their son, and another Filipina from Cebu.

                        Another Filipina from a third country who also stayed at the hotel was included. They were all temporary visitors in Hong Kong.

                        Another Pinay case in Saudi

                        Meanwhile, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) yesterday instructed the Philippine Consulate General in Jeddah to look into a report that another Filipina nurse working in a Saudi government hospital was infected with the virus.

                        The DFA issued the order based on reports that the Saudi Cabinet has announced the second case of a Filipina nurse and two other children.

                        With these new cases, Saudi Arabia has reported that there are already 14 people infected in two weeks.

                        The DFA also ordered the Philippine consulate in Jeddah to monitor the health of the Filipina.

                        The Council of Ministers chaired by King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz, custodian of the Two Holy Mosques in Jeddah, heard the report of Health Minister Dr. Abdullah Al Rabeeah about the three new cases in Riyadh, Dhahran and Madinah, according to reports.

                        Saudi officials called for greater international coordination and cooperation to combat the A(H1N1) flu pandemic in preparation for the Haj and Umrah (Ramadan rites) in August.

                        Dr. Abdullah told the Cabinet that the new case is a Filipina nurse who arrived at the King Khaled International Airport in Riyadh last June 10 by Cathay Pacific flight 330200 from the Philippines via Bahrain.

                        Saudi Arabia is strictly enforcing the World Health Organization (WHO) rules on the prevention of A(H1N1) in anticipation of an outbreak at the holy sites during Ramadan.

                        Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Health said Saudi health authorities might take precautionary measures in coordination with the WHO.

                        The DFA said in its update that the Philippine Embassy in Riyadh and the Philippine Consulate General in Jeddah reported that the Saudi government has stepped up monitoring and health requirements as part of prevention efforts against A(H1N1).

                        The consulate said a comprehensive information campaign about the virus was launched.

                        The massive awareness campaign emphasized basic precautions that people should follow to avoid infection.

                        Saudi Arabia also closely keeps tab on flights from countries hit by the disease.

                        The embassy has advised Filipino nationals in the Kingdom and in Yemen on the prevention of infection and transfer of the virus.

                        The Filipino community was also requested by the embassy to inform them of any cases involving Filipino nationals. – Dino Balabo, Pia Lee-Brago, Rainier Allan Ronda


                        • #13
                          Re: Phillipines - Confirmed Cases H1N1 - 396

                          48 more H1N1 cases confirmed

                          By Dona Pazzibugan
                          Philippine Daily Inquirer
                          First Posted 19:15:00 06/20/2009

                          Filed Under: Swine Flu, Epidemic and Plague, Health, Diseases

                          MANILA, Philippines—As the number of swine flu victims climbed to 392 Saturday with the confirmation of 48 new cases, the Department of Health started to act against traders unscrupulously taking advantage of people’s fear of the novel and potentially deadly influenza virus.

                          The authorities said, however, that of the 392 confirmed cases, 70 per cent or 275 have already fully recovered as of Saturday.

                          Health Secretary Francisco Duque III said he has ordered the Bureau of Food and Drugs to crack down on advertisements about anti-flu vaccines that give the wrong impression that their medication could protect people against the A(H1N1) virus.

                          There is no vaccine yet against the A(H1N1) virus and the existing vaccines are for seasonal flu, which medical experts say has proven to be more virulent than the A(H1N1) virus.

                          An agency under the DOH, BFAD has regulatory powers over all medicines being sold in the market.

                          “I've told the BFAD to study [these ads] if they give a misrepresentation. I told BFAD to be vigilant because there are a lot of unscrupulous people during times like this and the public falls victim to them,” Duque said in an interview over dzMM when asked about ads on flu vaccines.

                          With respect to ads that claim certain vaccines are effective against the flu, Duque said, "In one aspect they are correct, but that is a half-truth.”

                          He warned that the public might be wrongly led into thinking that available flu vaccines would protect them from the H1N1 strain.

                          Duque said he has also asked the Department of Trade and Industry to set price ceilings on facial masks that have again become popular since the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome scare in 2003.

                          Medical experts have said that masks should be worn only by persons infected with the H1N1 virus to keep them from infecting others. Masks are also helpful only for caregivers and medical personnel attending to patients.

                          The DOH has repeatedly discouraged the wearing of masks in public since the virus is not airborne.

                          The flu virus is transmitted when a person inhales respiratory droplets released by an infected person when he sneezes or coughs or if a person happens to touch an object or surface infected by the virus and then touches his eyes, nose or mouth before washing.

                          The DOH has asked the public to cover the mouth and nose when sneezing or coughing and to observe proper handwashing and social distancing (ie., avoid kissing and handshakes in social gatherings) as preventive measures.

                          “I've asked (Trade) Secretary Peter Favila to issue a suggested retail price for products whose prices have been increasing, taking advantage of the H1N1 issue,” Duque said when asked about the rising prices of masks.

                          The DOH said the best preventive measure is to improve one's immune system and resistance by having adequate sleep, good nutrition, plenty of fluids (water and fruit juices) and avoiding stress.

                          The DOH said all the H1N1 cases in the country have shown mild flu symptoms.

                          The 48 new confirmed cases had ages ranging from 1 to 53, with 17 as the median age (ie., half of the cases are age 17 and below).

                          The DOH said 45 of the new confirmed cases are Filipinos, while the remaining three are foreigners but their nationalities were not disclosed.

                          Twelve of the new cases have a history of travel to an affected country.


                          • #14
                            Re: Phillipines - Confirmed Cases H1N1 - 396

                            Flu hits 19 schools in Philippines <!--Saturday, June 20, 2009-->
                            Web posted at: 6/20/2009 7:37:12
                            Source ::: PHILIPPINE STAR

                            MANILA: The number of schools and universities that have confirmed cases of Influenza A(H1N1) in the past two weeks is now up to 19, according to the Department of Health (DOH) yesterday.

                            These are the De La Salle University and its sister school St. Benilde College, both in Taft Avenue, Manila; FEU-East Asia in Manila; St. Andrew High School in Parañaque, Ateneo High School in Quezon City; Hilera Elementary School in Barangay Hilera in Jaen, Nueva Ecija; Candelaria Meneses Duque High School in Barangay Bambang in Bulacan, Bulacan; Our Lady of Perpetual Succor College in Marikina City; Lagro Elementary School in Quezon City; Mapua Institute of Makati City; Philippines Science High School in Palo, Leyte and Miriam College in Quezon City.

                            Added to this list are Don Alejandro Roces Sr. Science and Technology High School in Quezon City; St. Paul’s College in Pasig City; Lourdes School in Mandaluyong City; University of the Philippines-Diliman, Dominican College in San Juan; San Beda College in Mendiola and Sta. Rosa Elementary School in Laguna. In the meantime, Ines de Guzman, Miriam College assistant for Student Affairs and head of the school’s infection team, clarified yesterday that the UP students stricken with the virus, particularly those who are members of the Pep Squad, were not infected inside their campus.

                            De Guzman said the UP Pep Squad member got infected during an encounter with Miriam’s two confirmed cases who are members of their dance troupe at a dance rehearsal in Cainta, Rizal. The UP Pep Squad student is a Miriam College alumna and a former member of the school’s dance troupe.

                            De Guzman noted that the mother of the UP Pep Squad member has confirmed this herself. In a press briefing, Health Undersecretary Mario Villaverde said the agency is now revising the guidelines it had previously issued on how schools should respond to the virus. He said the old guidelines, dubbed “School Response Level System,” had to be modified to suit the varying needs of every school.

                            The guidelines outline the criteria for suspended classes or closing the schools where there are confirmed cases and identifying the authorities that may decide on this.

                            The DOH, however, realized that the guidelines are not applicable in all schools. Villaverde cited, for instance, the campuses of UP and Ateneo where buildings are far from each other, therefore, limiting the risk of spreading the virus. Education Secretary Jesli Lapus, on the other hand, said that the Department of Education is awaiting the new DOH guidelines.

                            “Given the WHO pandemic status, DOH is now finalizing the revised response measure versus the virus,” he said. Health Secretary Francisco Duque III said that out of the 344 cases they have reported as of June 18, a total of 262 have already recovered.



                            • #15
                              Re: Phillipines - Confirmed Cases H1N1 - 396


                              Firms urged to help fight flu pandemic

                              By SHIANEE MAMANGLU
                              June 20, 2009, 8:17pm
                              The Department of Health Saturday asked business or corporate entities to help in curbing Influenza A (H1N1) in schools by providing disinfectants that could be used by school children, the most susceptible to infection.
                              In an interview, Health Secretary Francisco Duque III said that while government continues to implement and develop new measures to curb H1N1, the private sector can also play a big part in limiting its spread.
                              “I am strongly encouraging corporate entities as a manifestation of their corporate social responsibility, to help out in providing simple basic sanitizers or anything that could enhance personal hygiene in every school, particularly in the public elementary and high schools,’’ said Duque.
                              “The most effective way of preventing H1N1 and other viral diseases is still good personal hygiene, and quarantine and home care, when there are indications of flu,’’ he said.
                              Duque made the call as H1N1 infection has become widespread in the schools, including at Hilera Elementary School in Jaen, Nueva Ecija where an outbreak had been declared.
                              Other elementary and high schools that have confirmed cases are Candelaria National High School in Bulacan, Lagro Elementary School, Philippine Science High School in Eastern Visayas, Don Alejandro Roces Sr. Science and Technology High Schools and Ateneo High School in Loyola Heights Quezon City.
                              The new flu virus is also prevalent in a dozen of colleges and universities, the first of which was reported from De La Salle University (DLSU) as early as May this year.
                              Other colleges that have confirmed H1N1 include St. Paul College in Pasig City, Lourdes School of Mandaluyong City, College of St. Benilde-DLSU in Taft, Far Eastern University-East Asia College, Dominican College in San Juan City, St. Andrews College Paranaque, Our Lady of Perpetual Succor College in Marikina City, University of the Philippines-Diliman, Miriam College, Ateneo De Manila - University and Mapua Institute of Technology in Makati.
                              School authorities had earlier suspended classes to give way to the disinfection of the schools, and to allow those who came from H1N1-affected countries to undergo home quarantine.
                              Duque clarified that distribution of disinfectants or hand sanitizers should be made in public schools, adding that private schools can easily allocate for the disinfection of their schools.
                              Asked if it is also necessary for the school populace to use face masks, Duque said masks are very good shield for those who are already sick, including those with obstructive pulmonary diseases, tuberculosis and heart ailment among others, as this will protect them from acquiring multiple infections.
                              “Kung wala ka namang sakit o anumang nararamdaman, hindi naman kailangan mag suot ng mask. Dapat lang talaga palakasin natin ang ating resistensya, uminom ang vitamins and zinc,’’ he said.
                              The health chief cautioned, however, that while the flu strain that hit the country is a mild one, there is always a possibility for the virus to mutate and become fatal especially on individuals with pre-existing conditions.
                              He advised those with chronic diseases to be always on their toes since they are the most at risk.
                              “We should not be too complacent and let our guard down. We should continue to be vigilant as we in the government continue to monitor if there are any changes in its trends and patterns,’’ said Duque.
                              Reacting to Duque’s call, Education assistant secretary for special projects Dr. Thelma Santos said the appeal of the (DOH) Secretary is very timely as public schools are very much in dire need of disinfectants.
                              "In times like this, we really need the help of all sectors. We welcome all their assistance because we have to sustain efforts for cleanliness and sanitation in all 42, 000 public schools,'' Santos said.
                              Santos said the DepEd recently distributed some 265, 000 bars of soap in Bulacan, while thousands more were delivered to Nueva Ecija, two of the areas that had high prevalence of H1N1, to maintain hygiene and reduce infection.
                              Citing data from DepEd's action center, Santos said there are two new confirmed H1N1 cases from Sta. Rosa Central School in Laguna, while 43 pupils from Cainta ELementary School are under observation.
                              A few H1N1 suspects were also reported from Bacabac Elementary school in Tarlac, and Dedasto High School and Sakdalan High School in BUlacan, she said.
                              According to her, the DepEd is currently coordinating with the National Center for Mental Health (NCMH) to determine if there is a need for parents of children affected with H1N1 to undergo psychosocial debriefing.
                              The number of confirmed H1N1 cases in the country still stands at 344. In its June 19 data, DOH said that most of the confirmed cases were from Metro Manila with 234(68%), Central Luzon (region III) with 45 (13%) and CALABARZON (Region 4-A) with 31 (9%).
                              In the National Capital Region (NCR), most of the cases came from Quezon City (81 or 34%), Manila (44 or 18%), Paranaque (21 or 9%) and Makati (15 or 6%).Their age range is from 1 t 76 years old, with 18 as the median age. Most of the cases belonged to the 15-24 years age group (171 or 50%). Majority of them were males (187 or 54.4%).
                              Of the total 344 confirmed cases, DOH said that 305 (89%) are Filipinos. The other nationalities are Japanese (6), American (4), Australian (1), Chinese (1), Indian (1), Iranian (1), Korean (1) and Swedish (1). The remaining 22 did not specify their nationality.
                              The DOH said that 101 had history of travel to a country which had confirmed cases; most came from USA (48 or 14%), Japan (16 or 5%) and China (10 or 3%).
                              Worldwide, cases of H1N1 have peaked to 39, 620 with 167 deaths from 88 reporting countries.