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August 10, 2009

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Swine flu still a threat, says expert

THERE were now fewer new H1N1 influenza cases on a daily basis on the Chinese mainland, but a medical expert warned yesterday that serious or fatal cases would still be hard to avoid in future.

The Chinese mainland had reported 2,264 H1N1 flu cases by last Friday, 2,122 of which had recovered, according to the Ministry of Health.

By last Thursday, total H1N1 fatalities worldwide stood at 1,154 and more that 160,000 swine flu cases had been reported.

As many mild cases of H1N1 flu were believed not to have been reported, the actual mortality rate was close to seasonal flu, said Yang Weizhong, vice director of China's Center for Disease Control and Prevention.

But given the double risk of H1N1 and seasonal influenza, he said, people should become vaccinated against the seasonal variety by the end of September - rather than October, as usual.


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