x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 July 2017

Ministry looks into UAE links with Qatari H1N1 death

Health officials investigate the death of a Qatari man who died from swine flu complications but had not been correctly diagnosed in the UAE.

ABU DHABI // Health officials are investigating the death of a Qatari man who died from swine flu complications in his homeland, but had not been correctly diagnosed when he visited a hospital in the UAE the previous week. The Ministry of Health said that it was trying to establish why the man had not been tested for or diagnosed with the H1N1 virus in Dubai before travelling back to Qatar.

The ministry was unavailable for further comment yesterday. According to reports in Qatar the man, 36, died in late July after returning from a trip to Dubai where he had been suffering flu-like symptoms and had visited hospital twice. He was the first person in Qatar to die from the virus. Last week, the first swine flu death was recorded in the UAE. A 63-year-old Indian man visited Dubai Hospital with respiratory problems caused initially by the virus.

However, doctors were unable to save him as he had not sought treatment until the later stages of the disease, and he died on August 18. It is not known how many cases of the virus have been reported in the UAE, despite assurances from the health ministry that it would release figures each week. munderwood@thenational.ae