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New winds could bring the second wave of A H1N1

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  • New winds could bring the second wave of A H1N1

    New winds could bring the second wave of A H1N1
    Although no cases reported in hospitals such as San Juan de Dios, the health system is on alert. Respiratory therapy areas are filled

    By: Carlos Rigalt

    After nearly two months of silence, the signs of a possible second wave of influenza A H1N1 virus may reappear. Just as the beginning of the epidemic occurred in northern hemisphere, as reported by the newsletter for the week epidemiological 20th General Hospital San Juan de Dios, by mid-October, the intensity of acute respiratory disease in North America was high on particularly in the U.S. and Mexico.

    Yesterday's newspapers reflected this situation after the declaration of President Barack Obama in a national state of emergency in this country because of the millions of cases over a thousand dead and you've accumulated.

    Although the Central newsletter presents a low to moderate intensity of cases of respiratory diseases, Belize, and reports a number of cases than expected.
    Among the troubling issues raised by this week's report, is that the case fatality rate (number of deaths per hundred people who get the virus) of influenza A H1N1 has already exceeded that of seasonal influenza.

    The lower degree of lethality of the A H1N1 was one factor that kept the optimism while the epidemic was spreading worldwide during the first months of its appearance. This has been in the past. According to Ricardo Mena, head of the Epidemiology Unit of Hospital San Juan de Dios, the fatality rate of influenza A H1N1 has reached 2.2 percent, while seasonal influenza is 0.5 percent.

    On constant alert
    A new analysis of the National Epidemiology Center identified an "increase in the number of cases and deaths from influenza A H1N1 since the virus began circulating in the country," mentioned the Ministry of Health.

    This review was performed for surveillance in cases of influenza A H1N1 and it was established that more than 200 cases were officially reported. This research allowed to define a new figure of 1,080 people infected with the virus.

    The health areas with more cases are Guatemala, with 400, Santa Rosa with 184, with 143 Quetzaltenango and Escuintla with 53. Ixil area, located north of Quich?, reported no case.

    The findings were verified with input from the National Health Laboratory, the Community Policing Project and National Epidemiology Center of the Ministry of Public Health.

    According to Mena, while in San Juan de Dios Hospital yet to see any upturn in the number of cases, it maintains a permanent state of alert after the silence that followed the end of the first wave, in response to predictions that the virus attack in places and unknown ways.

    It's not like when it first sought the appearance of the virus among all people. Now would be concentrated among chronic patients and children under five years. "Our areas of emergency respiratory therapy have been unusually filled the past two weeks," says Mena.