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May 4, 2009

No confirmed cases of Influenza A (HINI)…

Story PictureJust before news time the Ministry of Health is meeting with key stakeholders to take major decisions in respect of the H-one-N-one flu. But up to this morning there were no confirmed cases of the Type A H-one-N-one virus, according to health officials. This is based on results of the second batch of samples sent for testing late last week that have come back negative. But we are not out of the woods just yet since the results of a third group of samples are due back soon and health officials say of those, there are three suspected cases. This means that the persons whose samples were taken had all the symptoms of the regular human influenza but were also in contact with someone or had just returned from one of the areas where there have been confirmed cases of the Type A H-one-N-one virus.

Dr. Michael Pitts, Dir. Of Health Services
“On Saturday morning we had sixteen tests that we had sent to CAREC and we got those back. Of those, thirteen were negative for Influenza A. The other three were positive in regards to other flu-like viruses. Since the weekend the regions have reported five other cases, three fit the definition of suspected cases and two are cases of interest. Since this morning, since coming to the media press conference we have added a further five to that list. So for today we’ll be having ten samples that we’ll be sending to CAREC. The three suspect cases are from three of the districts in Belize, meaning the Cayo District, Orange Walk and Belmopan. We have two cases of interest out of Belmopan.”

Health officials say that because they have changed their carrier for transporting the sample, there was a delay in dispatching the weekend tests. Those results should be back by late Tuesday or early Wednesday.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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