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First local case of Influenza A(H1N1)

KUALA LUMPUR, 17 June 2009: Malaysia has recorded its first local infection of influenza A(H1N1) involving a 17-year old female Malaysian student.

Health Ministry director-general Tan Sri Dr Mohd Ismail Merican in a statement today said the girl, the 19th person positive for influenza A(H1N1), had no history of having travelled to a country that had the flu.

He said the student had shown symptoms of cough and cold on 14 June at 9pm, and developed a fever the next day. She went to the University of Malaya Medical Centre on 15 June and was referred to the Sungai Buloh Hospital at 10am.

“During investigation, the 19th case reported that she was in contact with the 12th case, a medical student who was confirmed positive for influenza A(H1N1) on 13 June. Before this, she was not listed as a contact to case 12.

“This caused failure to [carry out] early monitoring and quarantine of case 19, and caused 20 more [contacts] to be exposed to [the] nfection,” he said.

Dr Ismail emphasised that it was important for those confirmed positive to cooperate and provide complete information so that early monitoring and quarantine could be done for all contacts, and to avoid the risk of spread to others.

He said five more instances of influenza A(H1N1) had been detected in the last 24 hours, including the local case, bringing the total to 23 cases.

The 20th case was a 23-year-old local public university male student who made a study visit together with 12 students and lecturers for seven days to Melbourne. He returned aboard Air Asia X D7 2723 and landed at the Low Cost Carrier Terminal (LCCT) on 17 June at 7.15am.

The 21st case was a 20-year-old medical student of a Melbourne university who returned to holiday in Malaysia aboard Malaysia Airlines MH 128, and arrived at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) on 16 June at 6am.

The 22nd case was a 54-year-old man who had travelled to Manila for business on 9 June. He returned by Malaysia Airlines MH 705 and arrived at KLIA on 12 June at 8.25pm.

The 23rd case was a female Malaysian student, 22, who arrived from  Melbourne by Air Asia X D7 at the LCCT on 14 June at 7.15am.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) has said that as of 8am today, the total number of cases reported was 36,346, with 163 deaths in 76 countries. — Bernama

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