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Probable Swine Flu In Congo -
3 Dead, Hundreds Sick

From Patricia Doyle, PhD
Hello Jeff - If the pandemic flu is spreading in the Congo now, it is all over for us. It already sounds like the virus in the Rep. of Congo is a mutated version. I would expect it to mutate further in a place that has little health care.
Crowed conditions, civil wars and strife, and poor medical health care as well as a plethora of diseases and Influenza viruses that spread throughout the area make for a very serious threat to the world, should this be pandemic H1N1.
Unidentified Disease Kills 3 In Congo
An unidentified disease has killed 3 people and spread to more than 100 others in the south west of the Republic of the Congo, according to medical sources who suspect swine flu, the pandemic (H1N1) 2009 virus. "3 people have lost their lives since the epidemic broke out a few days ago," said a local medical source. "A little more than 100 others are being monitored in the hospital" at Londela Kayes [Niari department], more than 350 km [220 mi] south west of Brazzaville. The symptoms are acute diarrhoea, high fever, and vomiting.
"We haven't yet received samples that we can analyse to determine the origins of the illness," a doctor at the National Laboratory of Public Health, Jean-Vivien Mombouli, said, adding that swine flu was nevertheless suspected. "We are at the stage of suspicions. Since [pandemic] H1N1 flu has already affected Brazzaville and Pointe-Noire (home to more than half the population of the country), it's probable that the movements of traders and agents of the state in small places have contaminated people," Dr Mombouli said. The Congo registered its 1st cases of the [pandemic] A (H1N1) virus at the end of October [2009] in a private school in Brazzaville [see ProMED-mail archived reference below].
The Congolese authorities state that they have set up an alert system, with the help of the World Health Organisation, making it possible to detect all kinds of flu and to react rapidly.
Communicated by:HealthMap Alerts via ProMED-mail <mailto:promed@promedmail.org>promed@promedmail.org
Insufficient information is provided in this report to identify the disease. An outbreak of pandemic (H1N1) 2009 influenza is suspected, but the symptoms described are not sufficiently specific to confirm this, or even to indicate that the etiologic agent is a virus.
Influenza pandemic (H1N1) 2009 virus infection is a possibility since this infection has been reported in school children in Brazzaville, but the mortality rate in this outbreak is high. Additional information concerning this outbreak would be appreciated.
The HealthMap/ProMED-mail interactive map of the Republic of Congo (Congo-Brazzaville) can be accessed at http://healthmap.org/r/00*q. An administrative map of the country is available at http://www.un.org/Depts/Cartographic/map/profile/congo.pdf. - Mod.CP]
Patricia A. Doyle DVM, PhD Bus Admin, Tropical Agricultural Economics Univ of West Indies Please visit my "Emerging Diseases" message board at: http://www.emergingdisease.org/phpbb/index.php Also my new website: http://drpdoyle.tripod.com/ Zhan le Devlesa tai sastimasa Go with God and in Good Health 
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