April 30, 2009 : Swine Flu has claimed the life of its first victim in the United States of America, a small child who lives near the Mexican border. With this, it appears that the world is on the brink of a virus attack, the Swine Flu.
It all started in Mexico, in South America, where people started getting sick with, and dying of, the H1N1 or Swine Flu virus. What makes it even more difficult to control, is that the symptoms of the virus are a lot like just regular flu. There’s fever, perhaps a sore throat, body ache, stiffness in joints, perhaps a bit of diarrhoea and vomiting. The only way to confirm if a person has contracted the Swine Flu virus is to get a blood test done in a laboratory.
According to a report in the BBC, people flying into countries from Mexico have been carrying the virus far and wide. New cases have been identified as far as New Zealand, South Korea, India and Israel. People have also been falling ill with Swine Flu in the UK, Spain and Canada. The maximum cases outside of Mexico have been reported in the United State of America, which so far has reported 64 confirmed cases of Swine Flu.
Doctors and virus experts are still not sure whether this is a pandemic, a word used to describe a situation when an infectious disease spreads through populations across a large region; for instance a continent, or even worldwide. According to World Health Organization (WHO), the flu has so far killed more than 150 people in Mexico alone. This, and the fact, that people have been found ill in other parts of the world, has prompted WHO to raise the Swine Flu threat to a level four, serious enough to get governments across the world on high alert.
Already, countries such as India and Spain are screening all passengers coming in from the Americas for any sign of fever, or any symptoms related to the virus. The key to preventing the spread of the virus, say doctors, is to get in touch with a doctor or hospital if you have the symptoms of the flu, and get a blood test done, so that the correct medicines can be given right away.