8 cases of Influenza A H1N1 detected in Sabah


KOTA KINABALU: The Sabah Health Department has confirmed that eight cases of Influenza A H1N1 were detected in the state this month.

Its director, Dr Christina Rundi said seven of the cases were detected at Wad Melur 2 of the Sabah Women and Children’s Hospital here while the other in Sandakan.

“The Sabah Health Department received a report on the cases at the Sabah Women and Children’s Hospital on Feb 3. Screening was done on 30 people suspected to have been exposed, from it (screening), 10 Nasopharyngeal Aspirate Respiratory Syncytial Virus (NPA RSV) samples were taken for the testing.

“The results confirmed seven cases were positive for A H1N1. The patients showed cough, fever and flu symptoms. The patients were five children and two adults. All of them are receiving treatment and are in stable condition.

Dr Christina said among the immediate measures taken by the department the moment the cases were confirmed as A H1NI were giving anti-virus shots to the infected patients, expanding the screening process to all who had been contact with them, and disinfecting the ward.

She said the ward concerned had also been isolated, screening of staff done with those (staff) found to be ill asked to go home apart from promoting awareness on precautions to be taken by the people should they show influenza-like-illness (ILI) symptoms.

Dr Christina said facemasks were also supplied to the H1N1 patients as well as the staff and visitors besides emphasising hand hygiene.

She said an operations room was activated at the hospital on Feb 4 to contain the situation and prevent it from spreading.

“H1N1 is endemic in Sabah and cases are reported each year. The H1N1 situation at the Sabah Women and Children’s Hospital is under control. Control and prevention measures have and are being taken,” she said.

Meanwhile, Christina said each year, H1N1 cases were reported in Sabah and in 2009, 944 cases were recorded which was a prevalency rate (PR) of 30.81 per 100,000 residents.

However, the figures dropped to 145 cases (PR 4.43) in 2010, 26 cases (PR 0.79) in 2011, 15 cases (PR 0.46) in 2012 and 6 cases (PR 0.16)lastyear. — Bernama