Five more students with swine flu symptoms in Punjab

June 16th, 2009 - 10:01 pm ICT by IANS  

Jalandhar, June 16 (IANS) Five more students with swine flu symptoms were hospitalised in this Punjab city Tuesday and their blood samples sent to the National Institute of Communicable Diseases (NICD) in New Delhi for tests, officials said.
The students complained of high fever, sore throat and shivering. Nine of their schoolmates were quarantined in the hospital Sunday.

The students were part of a group of 31 students and three teachers of the Guru Amar Das Public School that went to New York and Florida on an educational trip to the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).

“Five more students with suspected swine flu were admitted here Tuesday. They had travelled along with other infected students in the same flight. We have sent their blood samples to Delhi,” Roop Lal, Jalandhar district health officer, told IANS.

Of the nine students admitted to the civil hospital Sunday, seven have tested positive for the infection while the reports of the other two are still awaited.

“A special OPD has been set up for those showing symptoms of the virus. The seven students who tested positive for influenza A (H1N1) yesterday (Monday) have been kept in isolation wards and are under constant observation,” said Lal.

He said a list of people who came in contact with the infected students before being hospitalised was being prepared.

S.S. Walia, a surgeon at the civil hospital who is treating the infected students, told IANS: “The seven students with confirmed reports of swine flue are normal and recovering fast. There is no need to panic and the situation is under our control.”

The 31 students of the Guru Amar Das Public School and their three escorting teachers returned from the US to New Delhi Saturday aboard a Qatar Airlines flight via Doha.

One of them, a Class 12 student, tested positive for the swine flu virus in New Delhi. He was admitted to a Delhi hospital Saturday immediately after landing at the Indira Gandhi International Airport (IGIA).

The rest of the group travelled to Jalandhar by road.

“The school administration and health authorities acted very irresponsibly in this matter. After the detection of the first case in Delhi, they should not have allowed the rest of the group to travel without properly diagnosing them,” said a relative of a student here.

A health official said: “We have also identified eight other passengers of the Qatar Airlines flight, six of whom are from Punjab, who came in contact with the infected students. We have advised them to take required precautions and to immediately report to the doctor in case they detect any symptom of swine flu.”

Blood samples of another person who landed at Amritsar airport from Birmingham Monday were also sent to the NICD after he showed the symptoms of the swine flu.

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