Cuba confirms first swine flu case

May 13th, 2009 - 12:40 am ICT by IANS  

Havana, May 12 (EFE) A Mexican student in Cuba has tested positive for the H1N1 flu virus, making him the first person confirmed to have swine flu on the Caribbean island, the health ministry said.
“As of now, there is one confirmed case of the A(H1N1) influenza virus, (according to) the diagnosis made by the Institute of Tropical Medicine,” Cuban television reported, citing a health ministry communique.

Mexican students began arriving in Cuba April 25 and their condition has been “monitored strictly”, health officials said.

The monitoring system “allowed the detection of 14 Mexican students with cold symptoms that were considered minor and the majority of whom have been released from clinics and are under epidemiological and laboratory observation,” the ministry said.

“All the students have been investigated” and only one flu case has been confirmed, it said.

Since April 27, 84 people from eight countries have been examined on “clinical-epidemiological” grounds, as well as 511 others who had contact with them, but all of them tested negative for the flu virus, according to the ministry.

“All necessary measures continue to be taken and the resources, capabilities and trained personnel are available to deal with the international situation and its evolution,” it added.

The Cuban government decided April 29 to suspend all direct flights to and from Mexico after declaring a health alert at the national, provincial and municipal levels.

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