Wednesday, 15 July 2009

H1N1 Lowdown

I was on duty as a rapporteur on Monday for the annual Overseas Directors Meeting and so just to share some info on H1N1 as supplied by Dato' Dr. Hassan bin Abdul Rahman, Director of Communicable Disease Control Division from Public Health Department who gave updates on the H1N1 influenza pandemic,

H1N1 is a new influenza which causes a contagious respiratory illness that is communicable from human to human. The first case was reported on 16 April 2009, where it continued to spread around the world and by 16 May 2009, Malaysia had reported its first case of the influenza H1N1. Within 2 months, almost all parts in the world have such reported cases, of which 90% of the cases reported originated from the USA, Canada and South America. As of 12 July 2009, 143 countries have reported 106,565 confirmed cases and 470 deaths with 0.44% mortality rate.

A total of 42 countries have reported local transmission of the disease and 10 countries had sustained the virus via human to human transmission. Earlier cases reported of the H1N1 were those who had traveled to the USA, including Mexico and Canada. Now, the virus is spreading via local transmission in Asia and Europe where it was declared by WHO at pandemic level.

For Malaysia, the first confirmed case was reported on 16 May 2009. As to date, there are 710 confirmed cases of which 71% were imported cases from countries where local transmission has occurred and 29% were local transmission. Currently, only 83 victims are still recuperating in the hospital. There were no deaths reported.

It was informed that H1N1 cases with complications such as pneumonia or diabetes will be hospitalized and those with mild symptoms was advised to be quarantined at home. Government hospitals will give free treatment to those who contracted the H1N1 influenza, be it Malaysians or foreigners.

The Public Health Department (PHD) aims to:

  • reduce transmission and illness severity;
  • provide information to help health care providers, public health officials, and the public to address the challenges posed by this emergency.

PHD has recommended that precautions be taken from all level of society, be it individual or household to take safety measures by adhering to the guidelines provided by the Ministry of Health. It is advisable that everyone maintains personal hygiene, practice social distancing, reduce travel, avoid crowded areas and restrict mass gathering to ensure that the H1N1 pandemic will be contained. PHD will conduct disease surveillance by continuing screening at airports. The public is advised to get updates on current situation from credible sources such as Ministry of Health and World Health Organization. With regards to the tourism industry, Ministry of Health has not issued any restrictions for foreign tourists to travel to Malaysia.

Y.B. Minister of Tourism had reiterated that Malaysia is a safe country to visit from the H1N1 virus as we had taken precautionary measures to delay the widespread of this pandemic in this country. Travellers to Malaysia would not be subjected to quarantine if the traveler only showed mild symptoms of the H1N1 influenza.

*text taken from my rapporteur of the session, with info supplied by PHD.


hnyhar said...

tq nuwal 4 sharing da info.kat uk ni skrg tgh surprised sbb ada srg doktor died bcoz of this h1n1.of course the doc made treatment to h1n1 patient and seriously the virus attacted the doc's liver.

so now, uk [nhs =national health service] tgh kalut laa..sblm ni depa relax je..kat airport pun xcheck sgt psl depa treat h1n1 like normal selesema gitu.

Beautiful Life said...

Honestly kak, Overseas Directors yg dr Europe bila ditanya oleh Menteri Pelancongan samada H1N1 ni ada effect kepada masyarakat sana, mereka semua menggeleng kepala, macam takder apa2...

Hr ni kerajaan Malaysia announce nak beli vaccine untuk frontliners terutamanya yg bekerja di Kastam, Imigresen, dsb supaya mereka tidak dijangkiti.

Beautiful Life said...
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salzahari said...

Mmg bagi clinicians tade ape2 sbb tu mereka masih kata org awam takut bila tgk kes makin meningkat dan skrg dah ada admitt to ICU (hospital aku).

tp pokcik tu kena serangan asma dan kebtulan dia dpt H1N1..

anyway, hang rasa slmt ke KLIA-cukup ke kawalannya sbb kwn2 aku kata depa check gitu2 je sbb tu ramai yg balik dari overseas terlepas. kat hospital, kita mmg check betul2!

Beautiful Life said...

Tak tau nak ckp la samada screening kat KLIA tu betul2 atau tak? Yang pasti kalau rasa nak selamat pakai mask, and jaga personal hygiene. Plus, doc kata kalau takder tanda2 yg serius depa tak admit to ward.