Egypt reports first suspected student swine flu death, fifth death overall

Safaa Abdoun
3 Min Read

CAIRO: A nine-year-old boy is suspected of having died of swine flu early Saturday morning, Egypt’s health ministry announced.

The student attended Egypt Language School in Helwan governorate’s Fifth Settlement.

“The boy exhibited strong flu-like symptoms and his parents took him to a private clinic where he was given a Voltaren shot. Afterwards his condition deteriorated. By the time he arrived at Abbaseya Fever Hospital, he was in a coma, said Amr Kandil, deputy minister of health for preventative medicine.

“A CT scan undertaken at another private hospital showed that he suffered from brain hemorrhage. He passed away at around 4 am Saturday, he added.

A committee of doctors is currently investigating the child’s cause of death.

His death comes one day after the death from the H1N1 flu virus of a 36-year-old woman from Ismailia. She reportedly also suffered from high blood pressure and obesity, according to the ministry.

Egypt has reported 1,254 H1N1 cases so far, with 25 new cases recently announced.

According to the Information and Decision Support Center, 1,205 patients have recovered while 45 are still receiving treatment in hospitals.

Out of the 25 new cases, 11 are school students: two students from Egypt 2000 School in the fifth settlement where the class of students aged 10-11 was shut down for 15 days; five students in schools in Cairo governorate; two in Giza and one in Qena.

In addition, four cases were uncovered at universities around the country.

The remaining 10 cases are not school or university students, and include nine Egyptians, one of whom arrived from Saudi Arabia, in addition to one Russian female who recently flew in from Russia.

In a related note, the first shipment of swine flu vaccine arrived in Egypt early Sunday. It includes nearly 80,000 doses of the vaccine, transported to Cairo airport from the United Kingdom via Amsterdam.

Another 70,000 doses will arrive today, announced the Ministry of Health.

Egypt will import 5.5 million doses of the vaccine planned to arrive sporadically until March 2010.

Hajj pilgrims heading to Mecca will be among the first to be administered the vaccine as the government is particularly concerned about them. The government had even considered cancelling the Hajj season altogether if the vaccine hadn’t arrived on time.

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