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H1N1 FLU BREAKING NEWS: First Jamaican death, Chile cancels festival, military flu surveillance, advisory for OB settings

first_imgJul 7, 2009Jamaica reports first pandemic flu deathJamaica’s health ministry yesterday reported its first novel flu death, a patient who had an underlying medical condition who died at the University Hospital of the West Indies in Kingston, the Jamaica Observer reported. The ministry has asked a medical team to investigate the death. Jamaica reported its first novel flu cases in late May, and on Jun 24 announced the virus was spreading in the community. So far 33 cases have been reported, including the recent fatality.Chile officials cancel religious festival to curb flu spreadChile’s health ministry recently cancelled a large religious festival, set to converge on a small town in the southern part of the country, in an effort to slow the spread of pandemic flu, the Santiago Times reported on Jul 3. The dance and music celebration typically brings 200,000 visitors to the town of La Tirana. The event was last cancelled in 1991 during a cholera outbreak. The World Health Organization said yesterday Chile has confirmed 7,376 novel H1N1 cases.Military flu data boosts global influenza surveillanceA profile of US military flu surveillance efforts, to appear in the September issue of the American Journal of Preventive Medicine, illustrates the importance of global influenza surveillance and quick access to epidemiologic data, the journal said in a press release today. Military surveillance efforts began in the 1970s and have made notable contributions, such as detecting the first novel H1N1 cases in the United States. Military disease surveillance is active in 56 countries.[Jul 7 Am J Prev Med press release]CDC issues flu advisory for OB settingsThe Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) yesterday released interim guidance for preventing and managing novel H1N1 infections in obstetric settings. Severe illnesses in pregnant women and infants have been a feature of the flu pandemic, though experts don’t have a firm grasp on the epidemiology and illness spectrum. The new guidance says areas where prenatal care and labor and delivery services are delivered should be separated from areas where the sick are handled.[Jul 6 CDC guidance]last_img

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