US swine flu cases rise to 109, some 300 schools closed

May 1st, 2009 - 3:10 pm ICT by IANS  

Washington, May 1 (Xinhua) The number of confirmed human swine flu cases in the US has risen to 109, health officials said.
Nearly 300 schools across the country have been closed in view of the swine flu threat.

The states with confirmed swine flu cases are Arizona, California, Indiana, Kansas, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nevada, New York, Ohio, South Carolina and Texas, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said Thursday.

In Texas, a 23-month-old Mexican child has died of swine flu, the CDC said. The child is the first to die of the deadly flu outside Mexico, where the influenza A(H1N1) virus has killed at least 170 people.

The Education Department said Thursday that 298 schools in 11 states have been closed amid concerns about swine flu. The officials, however, did not mention when the schools would reopen.

It is the recommendation of public health officials “that schools with confirmed cases should consider closing if the situation becomes more serious,” Obama said in remarks at the White House.

The US government is “closely and continuously monitoring” the swine flu situation in the country.

“This is obviously a serious situation. Serious enough to take the utmost precautions,” Obama said.

Health officials were testing lab specimens from more patients, and these “may confirm additional cases of influenza A(H1N1) in the coming days,” said Ned Calonge, chief medical officer in the US state of Colorado.

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