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Swine flu present in more than 70 countries

Swine flu present in more than 70 countries article image

Cases of swine flu have now been confirmed in 73 countries, according to the latest World Health Organisation figures, with more than 25,000 people infected and 139 deaths. Fourteen deaths from the A(H1N1) disease were reported at the weekend. New countries to notify WHO of swine flu cases are: the Cayman Islands, Dominica, the United Arab Emirates, Trinidad and Tobago. Southern countries such as Australia and Chile are under careful watch as they enter winter, the season most susceptible to the spread of influenza. Australia increased its tally by almost 200 cases to more than 1,200 over the weekend, most of which are located in Victoria. Chile's total climbed 42 to 411 confirmed cases. Singapore has issued a travel warning to its citizens, telling them to avoid Victoria if travelling to Australia. Victorian Minister for the Environment Gavin Jennings said the warning was premature. "I think what all public health authorities around the world will be continuing to do is to understand the relative level of risk and they will assess that in a mature way," he said. "I think Singapore is not acting, at this moment, on the basis of the best public health advice, it may be premature advice. There are no reasons on public health grounds why anybody should not come to Victoria, should not come to Australia."

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