Last updated 15:46 25/07/2009

Global health officials have stepped up efforts to prepare for quick vaccination against the H1N1 pandemic virus, saying it appeared now to be affecting older age groups spared earlier in the pandemic.

The World Health Organisation and the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention both said they can only estimate how many people have been infected but the swine flu virus was still spreading quickly.

“As the disease expands broadly into communities, the average age of the cases is appearing to increase slightly,” the WHO said in a statement.

“This may reflect the situation in many countries where the earliest cases often occurred as school outbreaks but later cases were occurring in the community.”

The virus has been notable for affecting older children and young adults, groups normally not hard-hit by influenza.

The CDC said summer camps and military facilities were affected, but both agencies said there was no evidence the virus was mutating into drug-resistant or more virulent forms.

The CDC broadened its recommendations for seasonal flu vaccine – saying all children over the age of 6 months should get one, in part to lower the overall burden of respiratory disease when autumn and winter come.

WHO said vaccination against H1N1 might start in weeks, even though clinical trials to test the safety, efficacy and needed dosage of H1N1 vaccines have barely started.

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http://tinyurl.com/mzx4l4

 

Australia
•  Child’s flu death sparks tensions in Australia (Link)
•  79% of Kiwis ‘could get swine flu’ (Link)
•  Flu may have claimed first ‘healthy’ Kiwi  (Link)

Austria
•  97 A/H1N1 flu cases confirmed in Austria (Link)

Bangladesh
•  Swine flu cases rise to 28 (Link)
•  Another Swine flu case found (Link)

Brazil
•  Brazil confirms 4 more A/H1N1 flu deaths (Link)
•  Army will take care of to patients in Praia Grande (Link)
•  Sao Paulo postpones return to the lessons (Link)

Brunei
•  Philippine Embassy Steps Up Frontline Measures Against H1N1 (Link)

Canada
•  New flu virus detected in Saskatchewan hits dead-end (Link)
•  Swine flu: How scared should we be? (Link)
•  Swine Flu Diary (Link)
•  Better Understanding H1N1 Flu Virus (Link)
•  Swine flu claims Cape Breton woman (Link)

Cayman Islands
•  First H1N1 death in the Cayman Islands (Link)

China
•  Hong Kong confirms 145 new A (H1N1) flu cases (Link)
•  Student camps hit by swine flu (Link)
•  Hong Kong Confirms 160 new cases (Link)

Dubai
•  Lessons learnt about swine flu in Abu Dhabi (Link)

Germany
•  Beginning of a huge wave (Link)
•  Germany prepares for increased swine flu outbreaks (Link)

India
•  44 confirmed cases in Karnataka (Link)
•  Swine flu reaches Rajasthan capital (Link)
•  21 new swine flu cases in India, total 413  (Link)
•  Swine flu scare in another Delhi school (Link)
•  WHO sends virus, India begins work on swine flu vaccine (Link)
•  3 more swine flu cases (Link)

Indonesia
•  First H1N1 positive patient dies (Link)

Italy
•  Flu Pandemic May Induce Vatican to Suspend Concentrations (Link)

Jordan
•  Swine flu cases rise to 53 as officials expect vaccine delay (Link)

Malaysia
•  Another school closes (Link)
•  Flu virus spreading in clusters, says Liow (Link)
•  Mother, newborn critically ill with virus (Link)
•  Increasing Local Influenza A Cases May Lead To Nationwide Spread (Link)

Mexico
•  Swine flu rebounds in southern Mexico (Link)

Singapore
•  Influenza Forecast Blog (Link)

South Africa
•  Swine flu strikes pupils at elite school (Link)

Thailand
•  PM must be free from swine flu (Link)

Taiwan
•  More than 100 catch swine flu in Kaohsiung  (Link)

Turkey
•  Swine flu fails to grip Turkey (Link)

United Kingdom
•  English Town May Use Catacombs to Bury Swine Flu Dead (Link)
•  Town halls and libraries to hand out swine flu pills (Link)
•  5,500 receive flu vaccine [actually antivirals, not vaccine] (Link)

United States
•  NC: Brevard man dies of swine flu (Link)
•  Texas Rangers Baseball (Link)
•  IL: 3,404 confirmed and probable cases, 17 deaths (Link)
•  CA: No significant mutation seen in swine flu  (Link)
•  Guam: Public Health confirms 9 new swine flu cases (Link)
•  OR: Swine flu patient in critical condition at Medford hospital (Link)
•  OR: Flu outbreak grounds Beavers (Link and link)
•  MO: YMCA camp to remain closed after illness  (Link)
•  FL: Flu activity sees uptick in region (Link)
•  MI: Director not informed of swine flu (Link)
•  ID: Prison weathers swine flu outbreak (Link)
•  MO: H1N1 in the YMCA (Link)
•  TX: Local woman in critical condition with swine flu, pneumonia (Link)
•  MI: Eaton County Man Dies From H1N1 Virus (Link)
•  NY: Seventh death linked to swine flu in Suffolk County (Link)
•  MO: Swine flu cases at Fort Leonard Wood now more than St. Louis, Kansas City (Link)
•  FL: Flu shots & death reports (Link)
•  First Swine Flu Death In Western North Carolina (Link)
•  AL:14 Suspected Swine Flu Cases (Link)
•  UT: Women’s shelter battles bout of flu (Link)
•  FL: Local health officials mum on third swine flu victim’s connection to DCF (Link)
•  South Dakota reports 5 more cases of flu (Link)
•  Indiana Confirmed More Pandemic H1N1 Flu Cases (Link)
•  Virgin Islands: Little League team contracts swine flu (Link)

Vietnam
•  H1N1 cases at schools fans fears of more outbreaks (Link)

General News
•  WHO says that 2 Billion to be infected within 2 years (Link)
•  WHO Says Younger People at Greater Risk of Catching Swine Flu (Link)
•  Mercosur urges patent-free swine flu treatments (Link)
•  81 new A/H1N1 cases confirmed in Europe (Link)

Commentary
•  Opinion on case counting from EM (Link)
•  MA Editorial: Let people make own risk assessments (Link)
•  Tips for avoiding quarantine when traveling abroad this summer (Link)

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