Asia on high alert for swine flu.4/27/2009 3:41:02 AM
Asian governments, who in recent years have been at the forefront of deadly viral outbreaks, have gone on high alert to prevent the H1N1 swine flu swine flu
A highly contagious form of human influenza caused by a filterable virus identical or related to a virus formerly isolated from infected swine. from landing on their shores.
Battle-hardened from fights against the severe acute respiratory syndrome Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) Definition
Severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) is the first emergent and highly transmissible viral disease to appear during the twenty-first century. (Sars) and bird flu bird flu: see influenza.
or avian influenza
viral respiratory disease, mainly of birds including poultry and waterbirds but also transmissible to humans. epidemics, the authorities in several Asian countries have begun enforcing checks on passengers and pork products from Mexico.
They also urged residents to be on guard for symptoms of the new flu and some nations issued travel warnings for Mexico and the US, where there have been dozens of confirmed cases.
The measures were put in place amid fear that the swine flu virus might spread to Asia, which has battled hard to control the bird flu disease spread by another highly-contagious virus, the H5N1, which has claimed hundreds of lives.
The new H1N1 virus, apparently a mix of human, pig and bird viruses, is believed to have killed more than 100 people in Mexico, where it was first detected, and is suspected to have spread to different continents.
The World Health Organisation has warned of a possible pandemic pandemic /pan·dem·ic/ (pan-dem´ik)
1. a widespread epidemic of a disease.
2. widely epidemic.
Epidemic over a wide geographic area.
n. as New Zealand New Zealand (zē`lənd), island country (2005 est. pop. 4,035,000), 104,454 sq mi (270,534 sq km), in the S Pacific Ocean, over 1,000 mi (1,600 km) SE of Australia. The capital is Wellington; the largest city and leading port is Auckland. , Australia, the US, Canada, Brazil, Spain and Israel joined the growing list of countries where confirmed or suspected cases have been reported.
Japan, Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia said they were screening passengers at checkpoints for fever and flu symptoms, many using devices at airports that had been put in place to monitor Sars and bird flu over the last few years.
Hong Kong Hong Kong (hŏng kŏng), Mandarin Xianggang, special administrative region of China, formerly a British crown colony (2005 est. pop. 6,899,000), land area 422 sq mi (1,092 sq km), adjacent to Guangdong prov. raised its swine-flu response level from "alert" to "serious" and warned against travel to Mexico, as did South Korea.
Japanese authorities said there were plans to put up signs urging passengers going to Mexico to "wear masks, wash hands and gargle gargle /gar·gle/ (gahr´g'l)
1. a solution for rinsing mouth and throat.
2. to rinse the mouth and throat by holding a solution in the open mouth and agitating it by expulsion of air from the lungs. ".
Health authorities in the Philippines, China and Taiwan began planning to put anyone with symptoms of the deadly virus under quarantine.
Francisco Duque, the Philippine health secretary, said the government was also blocking the entry of any pigs or pork products from Mexico and the US.
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