x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 22 July 2017

Man tests positive for swine flu virus

A man who was being kept at Tawam Hospital in Al Ain after he showed flu-like symptoms has tested positive for the H1N1 strain of flu.

DUBAI // A man who was being kept at Tawam Hospital in Al Ain after he showed flu-like symptoms including a sore throat, fever and cough has tested positive for the H1N1 strain of flu. His case was reported last week as he travelled to Abu Dhabi from Canada and had been held in isolation. Health officials say he has been receiving treatment and will remain under observation for 10 days. Dr Haneef Hassan, UAE Minister of Health, told the state news agency WAM: "The patient, who arrived to the country on a flight from Canada, is recovering now at a government hospital after he has received a course of treatment. He will remain under observation and treatment for ten days as medically recommended. Passengers who were on the same flight have not developed any H1N1 symptoms." Dr Hassan added: "We are taking all precautionary and preventive measures, as recommended by the World Health Organization. Also, we are fully cooperating and regularly communicating with regional and international organizations to exchange the latest information of H1N1 virus." Last week, a Nepali woman who travelled from Dubai to Nepal via New Delhi was isolated after she tested positive for influenza A. Throat swabs were taken and she was being kept in quarantine until the results of swine flu tests were known. "We are happy to report that her tests were negative and she has been asked to go home," said Gajananda Bhandari, who is the co-ordinator for swine flu control in Nepal and in charge of the medical centre at the airport. Another suspected case of swine flu, a 35-year-old Indian man who was isolated on arrival at NSG Bose airport in Kolkata, was also released. The Indian had been travelling from the Philippines to Kolkata via Dubai and was kept in quarantine after he complained of borderline fever and a sore throat. Authorities at the airport said the man was no longer in isolation. The cases raised concerns after India reported its first confirmed case of swine flu last week. The victim was a 23-year-old student travelling from the US to India via Dubai. Last week the Consul General of India in Dubai started issuing travel advisories on swine flu to all visa applicants. Passengers arriving at most airports in India were asked to fill a form and be checked by a doctor before going through immigration. Health forms were also being distributed on flights to Dubai. Indian authorities warned that travellers may be detained at the airport quarantine for observation or admitted to a hospital. pmenon@thenational.ae

"We are happy to report that her tests were negative and she has been asked to go home," said Gajananda Bhandari, who is the co-ordinator for swine flu control in Nepal and in charge of the medical centre at the airport. Another suspected case of swine flu, a 35-year-old Indian man who was isolated on arrival at NSG Bose airport in Kolkata, was also released. The Indian had been travelling from the Philippines to Kolkata via Dubai and was kept in quarantine after he complained of borderline fever and a sore throat. Authorities at the airport said the man was no longer in isolation.

The cases raised concerns after India reported its first confirmed case of swine flu last week. The victim was a 23-year-old student travelling from the US to India via Dubai. Last week the Consul General of India in Dubai started issuing travel advisories on swine flu to all visa applicants. Passengers arriving at most airports in India were asked to fill a form and be checked by a doctor before going through immigration.

Health forms were also being distributed on flights to Dubai. Indian authorities warned that travellers may be detained at the airport quarantine for observation or admitted to a hospital. In the UAE, the first suspected case of swine flu was reported last week where a man travelling to Abu Dhabi from Canada was isolated. The man is being kept at Tawam Hospital in Al Ain after he showed flu-like symptoms including a sore throat, fever and cough.

pmenon@thenational.ae