Health authorities have confirmed that swine flu is still causing deaths in Jamaica. The Ministry of Health said that a woman died at the University Hospital of the West Indies on Sunday, May 22, 2011, and statistics show that up to May 21, there were eight confirmed cases of swine flu among a total of 42 influenza cases.
The Ministry of Health has warned that the region is still in the post-pandemic stage of the outbreak, which means that the H1N1 virus has taken on a behaviour and intensity similar to that of regular seasonal influenza viruses. “It also means that in the coming years there could be sustained community transmission and localized outbreaks of the disease,” it said.
Director of Emergency, Disaster Management and Special Services in the Health Ministry, Dr. Marion Bullock DuCasse, has therefore urged Jamaicans to continue to take the necessary precautions to protect themselves from infection. “A number of Influenza viruses are currently in circulation as we are still in the flu season. We therefore continue to urge persons to wash their hands regularly and properly with soap and water or use an alcohol based hand sanitizer, cover their nose and mouth when sneezing and coughing and importantly ensure that their children are taught these practices. Persons should also stay home if they are ill so as not to spread the illness to others,” she said.
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