Mexico has gone to great lengths to contain this Flu.
Any nation who takes Swine Flu threat lightly will suffer as a result.
Hopefully Malaysia will not fall into this trap.
Argentina's medical services say they are being swamped
By Vicente L. Panetta – 14 hours ago
BUENOS AIRES, Argentina — Argentines worried they may have swine flu
have overwhelmed some emergency medical services at the onset of the
South American winter flu season, health officials said Wednesday.
The Health Ministry said Argentina's confirmed caseload has grown to
281, with an additional 1,032 possible cases being studied in labs.
More than two-thirds of those sickened were young people, and 29
schools in Buenos Aires and the surrounding area have been closed for
two weeks after children tested positive.
Sergio Alejandre, hospitals director for Buenos Aires province, said
Wednesday that public hospitals are beefing up because with the
arrival of the Southern Hemisphere winter, "consultations begin to
increase ... for respiratory problems, adult flu and bronchitis in
Though the number of confirmed cases is less than one-sixth of
neighbouring Chile's caseload, so many Argentines are seeking
treatment that emergency services have "collapsed" in and around the
capital, Carlos Chiarelli of the Chamber of Medical Emergencies said
at a news conference. "A single company fielded 10,000 calls yesterday
Federico Diaz Mathe, director of national health organization Cimara,
said fears have led to an "excessive demand," so emergency crews do
not have enough ambulances, doctors or nurses for those seeking help.
"If this gets worse, medical services will have to select their
patients. If they have certain symptoms, keep an eye on them; if other
symptoms, send a doctor to their home," Mathe told Continental radio.
"The fear is unfounded. There is more fear than actual cases."
That fear isn't limited to the capital. On May 22, police in a city
near the Chilean border fired rubber bullets to disperse a small group
of people who pelted a bus with rocks and sticks after hearing rumours
that a man on board was infected with swine flu. One protester and six
officers suffered minor injuries after the protesters surrounded the
bus at a provincial hospital in Godoy Cruz. The Chilean passenger was
later determined not to be infected.
Chile has by far the most confirmed cases in South America, with 1,694
people sickened. But Chile's Health Ministry said just 29 are
considered serious cases, and only two patients have died.
U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention experts were arriving
Wednesday to study the disease's spread in the nation, Chilean Health
Minister Alvaro Erazo said.
Swine flu cases have been confirmed across nearly all of South
On Tuesday, Colombia announced the first fatal case within its
borders: a 24-year-old who died last week in a hospital outside
In Mexico, which initially bore the brunt of the outbreak, the health
secretary said Wednesday that the country was no longer seeing serious
Jose Angel Cordova said the number of new cases has fallen to less
than 30 a day, down from a daily average of 300 at the peak of the
outbreak in late April.
He said Mexico had confirmed a total of 6,337 cases of swine flu since
the outbreak, including 108 deaths.
Cordova said he was concerned other countries now dealing with
outbreaks have not taken such drastic measures as Mexico, which closed
schools and restaurants for a week at the end of April to contain the
spread of the virus.
Associated Press writer Federico Quilodran in Santiago, Chile,
contributed to this report.
Copyright © 2009 The Canadian Press. All rights reserved.