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Mainland counts 4th H1N1 case

CHINA'S Ministry of Health confirmed the mainland's fourth case of swine flu and also reported that an Italian tourist traveling in Tibet was suspected of carrying the H1N1 virus.

The latest confirmed flu victim was reported in south China's Guangdong Province. The patient was identified as a man surnamed Yang who returned recently from a tour of the United States and Canada and flew to Hong Kong via the Republic of Korea. He then took a train to Guangdong on Friday.

His temperature returned to a normal 36.6 degrees Celsius on Monday, and his sore throat and cough abated, said Yin Zhibiao, vice president of the No. 8 People's Hospital, where Yang has been treated since Friday.

Seventy-five of the 93 people exposed to Yang on train T810 have been contacted by health departments and were put under quarantine.

The Guangdong Entry-Exit Inspection and Quarantine Bureau is tracing the others - nine citizens of Australia and Canada, eight from the Chinese mainland and another from Hong Kong.

Also yesterday, the health ministry reported that a 42-year-old Italian woman, whose name was not disclosed, was in stable condition at a hospital in Zham town of Tibet Autonomous Region, bordering Nepal. Twenty-three foreign nationals who traveled with her were quarantined at a local hotel.

The woman flew to Nepal from Italy on May 12. Three days later she developed a sore throat and blocked sinuses, and on Saturday her body temperature reached 38.5 degrees Celsius upon entering Zham. She was then sent to the hospital.

Tibet's Center for Disease Control and Prevention conducted laboratory tests on Monday, and the results were positive for the H1N1 virus. The ministry said the national CDC was checking the results.

In Jinan, the mainland's second confirmed A/H1N1 influenza patient was discharged from a hospital early yesterday after eight days of treatment in the capital of east China's Shandong Province.

The patient, surnamed Lu, walked out of an isolation ward and shook hands with doctors. He joked that he had become a star and now simply wanted to return to his normal life.

The mainland's third patient, now being treated in a Beijing hospital, could be discharged this weekend, the municipal health bureau said yesterday. The 18-year-old woman is a student who returned from the US and was confirmed to have the flu on Saturday. The mainland's first swine flu victim was released on Sunday in Sichuan Province.


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