Swine flu cases rise in England and Scotland

Rates of swine flu in England and Scotland have increased over the last week, coinciding with the start of the new school term.

Sir Liam Donaldson
Sir Liam Donaldson

The Scottish government has recorded a ‘marked increase' in cases over the last two weeks, while latest figures show that there were 5,200 cases of swine flu in England this week, an increase of 2,000 on last week.

Speaking at a briefing in central London, the CMO for England Sir Liam Donaldson, said that 108 PCTs had reported an increase in influenza rates but that levels where not up to these seen in the summer.

He added that the rise in cases confirmed the belief that school children are ‘super spreaders' of viruses.

‘We have seen a few school outbreaks in the last week, including two in London, two in south Yorkshire and one in the North East.'

A total of 143 patients are currently in hospital in England because of swine flu, with one new death confirmed bringing the total to 67 for England and 79 for the UK.

Elsewhere, the HPA has reported that two samples from UK patients have shown resistance to antivirals.

Both samples are from immunocomprised patients. One has been confirmed to be resistant, while the other is still undergoing further tests to confirm resistance.

Globally, there have now been 23 confirmed cases of resistance to antivirals.


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