H1N1 FLU BREAKING NEWS: Case counts, NY deaths, first case in Singapore, Australia's brisk rise, sham products

May 27, 2009

Global novel H1N1 cases pass 13,000
The global count of confirmed novel H1N1 cases grew to 13,398, including 95 fatalities, from 48 countries, the World Health Organization (WHO) reported today. Bahrain and Singapore are the two new countries reporting new cases since yesterday. The total included 4,541 cases and 83 deaths in Mexico, 6,764 cases and 10 deaths in the United States (as of May 25), 921 cases and 1 death in Canada, and 33 cases and 1 death in Costa Rica.
[WHO update 40]

US cases approach 8,000
The nation's tally of confirmed and probable novel H5N1 flu cases climbed to 7,927, up 1,163 cases since May 25, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported today. A CDC official said yesterday in a media briefing that the case total would likely show a big spike because of reporting delays over the recent holiday weekend. One more death is included in the total, that of a New York woman. The number of states reporting cases remained at 47, plus the District of Columbia.
[Current CDC numbers]

New York reports two more flu deaths
Officials from the New York City's health department announced two more deaths from the novel flu virus, a 41-year-old woman from Queens and a 34-year-old man from Brooklyn, the New York Post reported today. Both reportedly had underlying medical conditions but had not been hospitalized before they died, and neither worked at a school. The deaths raise the city's death toll to four and the US toll to 14.
[May 27 New York Post story]

Singapore confirms first novel H1N1 case
Singapore reported its first novel H1N1 case, in a 22-year-old woman who had recently traveled in the United States, Agence France-Presse (AFP) reported today. She came down with a cough on her flight into Singapore yesterday and sought medical care upon her return home. Officials are locating the woman's close contacts, who will be quarantined and given antiviral medication. The health ministry is also trying to contact airline passengers who sat near the woman.

Australia sees brisk rise in novel flu cases
Australia's health ministry has confirmed 61 novel H1N1 cases, up from 39 yesterday, and expects a steady increase over the next 2 days, Bloomberg News reported today. Five of the nation's six states have reported cases, along with one of Australia's two territories. About half of the cases (33) are in the southeastern state of Victoria, where authorities say they will open clinics to provide antiviral drugs to anyone with influenza symptoms.
[May 27 Bloomberg News story]

Two of China's 12 imported cases detected at airports
In an overview of 12 novel flu cases reported in China, posted yesterday by ProMED, epidemiologist Ji-Ming Chen, PhD, of China's Animal Health and Epidemiology Center wrote that all the cases were imported, including one from Australia. Only two of the cases were detected at airport thermal scanners. Only two patients felt sick during their flights; the rest reported symptoms after reaching their destination. None have become severely ill.
[May 26 ProMed post]

FDA lists fraudulent flu-related products
Since May 1, when the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), vowed to aggressively pursue businesses that promote unapproved or unauthorized products related to the novel H1N1 flu, the agency has added 72 items to its list of fraudulent H1N-related products. The products range from air filtration systems to protective equipment to nutrition supplements. The companies have received warning letters from the FDA, which urged consumers to be cautious about novel flu marketing pitches.
[FDA fraudulent H1N1 product list]

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