Mexico swine flu toll climbs to 149

April 28th, 2009 - 7:48 am ICT by IANS  

Mexico City, April 28 (EFE) The toll in Mexico’s swine flu outbreak has risen to 149, officials said.
The authorities said that the swine flu has spread to 31 states in the country.

Health secretary Jose Angel Cordova said Monday more than half of the 1,995 people with suspected swine flu have been treated and discharged from the hospitals.

The official said the swine flu, caused by the A/N1H1 virus, was first recorded in the country April 2 when a boy was affected with the virus in the Gulf coast of Veracruz.

When asked how long the epidemic might last, he said: “It is a different virus, so it’s difficult. How can we know?”

“Until we have a consistent reduction,” the official said, “we will not be able to say that we’re looking at the end.”

The secretary said the schools across the country will remain closed as part of the preventive measures for swine flu.

The federal government is also contemplating to order the suspension of some business operations as part of the preventive measures, he added.

The Mexico City, home to nearly 20 million people, was quieter than usual, as stores remained closed and many people stayed indoors. People venturing out were wearing blue surgical masks to protect them from the infection.

Aggravating the tension was a 5.7-magnitude earthquake that jolted the Mexican capital Monday. There was however no report of damage or casualties.

Cordoba said the A/N1H1 virus is curable if treated within 48 hours of the appearance of symptoms.

He said the authorities have one million doses of anti-virals and taking steps to collect another 1.4 million doses.

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