India confirms fresh case of swine flu, total seven now

June 6th, 2009 - 5:41 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, June 6 (IANS) A 20-year-old man, who tested positive for influenza A (H1N1) earlier this week, has transmitted the virus to his brother and a four-and-a-half year old girl travelling with him on the same plane - taking to seven the total number of swine flu cases reported in India so far, health officials said Saturday.
“The youth had returned to India from the US via London. He got down at the Hyderabad airport and went straight home. It is now confirmed that he transmitted the virus to his brother and a young girl who was travelling with him in the same flight,” Shiv Lal, head of the National Institute of Communicable Diseases, told IANS.

“This takes the total to seven influenza A(H1N1) infections in India,” he added.

Lal said the three people are being monitored in hospitals in Hyderabad.

“A team of NICD officials is on its way to Hyderabad along with a multi-disciplinary rapid response team,” he said.

The youth, whose identity has not been revealed, had not reported his condition when he reached the airport May 30.

However, on June 1 he reported at the Hyderabad hospital with complaints of cough, running nose and fever.

“His samples tested positive for Influenza A (H1N1). He has been put on (anti-flu drug) Oseltamivir, as are the others,” the official said.

After his case came to light, authorities swung into action and tried to trace the others who had come into contact with him.

It was reported that his brother was also showing the same symptoms and was tested for the infection.

“He tested positive. Among the passengers near him was a four-and-a-half-year-old girl. She was sitting with her mother on the next row. When she was tested, she was found positive,” he added.

“Samples of her mother was also sent for testing and were found negative. But we are doing a repeat test,” Lal added.

India reported its first swine flu infection May 16 - a 23-year-old man who travelled by Emirates Airline from New York to Hyderabad via Dubai.

Health screening of passengers coming from the affected countries is continuing at 21 international airports and about 1.3 million passengers have been screened so far.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) has reported about 21,940 confirmed cases of influenza A(H1N1) infection from 69 countries and 125 deaths till June 5.

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