New swine flu wave hits Mexico, closings unlikely
Press diagnosis reached higher levels than the peak in September of H1N1 in April, with 483 new cases in a single day this month alone.
It is unlikely that large-scale closure of schools and stadiums, however, because health officials know that the virus is usually mild, if treated early.
“We know the situation is not as serious” as the authorities feared last spring, said Health Secretary Jose Angel Cordova.
However, 3,000 schools from all over Mexico were closed earlier this week by the virus. That number has dropped to 128, Secretary of Education, Alonso Lujambio told senators Wednesday when said officials are still developing the criteria used to close schools in the future.
When the first cases of swine flu was confirmed in late April, the government of Mexico ordered the immediate closure of all schools, museums, libraries and theaters in the capital. Within days, national schools, dining rooms and other businesses closed, streets emptied mostly soldiers and handed out millions of face masks.
Mexico could see up to 5 million cases of swine flu during the flu season this winter and could reach 2,000 deaths, Cordova said.
Some hospitals already have the same number of swine flu patients as they did in April, said on Thursday. Officials are negotiating with laboratories to ensure the doses of a vaccine before October, he added.
Mexico had 29,417 cases and 226 deaths as of Friday.
The World Health Organization says more than 300,000 cases of H1N1 have been confirmed worldwide, with more than 3,900 people have died from the virus.