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Suspicious symptoms checked in HK woman

A HONG Kong woman who recently developed symptoms of respiratory infection and fever while traveling to the United States was being tested for swine flu, the Hong Kong Center for Health Protection said yesterday.

The city stepped up surveillance of swine flu on Saturday. The Center for Health Protection said it has since received reports on three patients in line with the reporting criteria, but the other two have since been cleared.

The 27-year-old woman developed the symptoms last Thursday in San Francisco and went back to Hong Kong on Friday. She was admitted to a local hospital on Sunday and was in stable condition, the center said.

"Laboratory analysis on a respiratory tract specimen taken from her yielded positive results for human influenza A H3 subtype, which is not swine influenza," the center said in a statement.

"We still don't know the results of the tests for swine flu," the Information Services Department of the Hong Kong government said last night.

The center has distributed leaflets with health messages at the airport to passengers arriving from places where human cases of swine flu were reported.

Surveillance and preventive measures being put in place at all control points will be under constant review and amended if necessary to keep abreast of the latest developments, it added.

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Health said yesterday that it is developing a diagnostic reagent for use in testing for swine flu.

Research on a possible vaccine and medication to combat the deadly virus was also under way, ministry spokesman Mao Qun'an said.


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