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Friday, June 12, 2009

WHO Declares a Global Flu Pandemic.

The World Health Organization (WHO) has declared a global flu pandemic after holding an emergency meeting.

"We have evidence to suggest we are seeing the first pandemic of the 21st century " - Dr Margaret Chan, WHO director-general said.

The Director General of the World Health Organization, Doctor Margaret Chan, has formally stated that the swine flu outbreak is now a global pandemic.

Speaking at the WHO headquarters in Geneva, Dr Chan said the further spread of the virus was inevitable.

However she added there was good reason to believe it would be of moderate severity in its early days.

It means the swine flu virus is spreading in at least two regions of the world with rising cases being seen in the UK, Australia, Japan and Chile.

WHO chief Dr Margaret Chan said the move did not mean the virus was causing more severe illness or more deaths.

The swine flu (H1N1) virus first emerged in Mexico in April and has since spread to 74 countries.

Official reports say there have been nearly 30,000 cases globally and 141 deaths, with figures rising daily.

Hong Kong said it was closing all its nurseries and primary schools for two weeks following 12 school cases.

It is the first flu pandemic in 40 years - the last in 1968 killed about one million people.

However, the current pandemic seems to be moderate and causing mild illness in most people.

Most cases are occurring in young working age adults and a third to a half of complications are presenting in otherwise healthy people.

Dr Chan said: "We have evidence to suggest we are seeing the first pandemic of the 21st Century.


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