Saturday, 4 July 2009

H1N1 officially arrives

Story from the Post.
In Saraburi province, Saraburi Witthayakhom school has suspended classes until July 9 after two students tested positive for H1N1 and three students developed flu-like symptoms.

The two students with flu picked it up after returning from tuition schools in Bangkok, while the three students with flu-like symptoms fell ill after they went to a weekend concert by the Korean boy band Dong Bang Shin Ki, at Impact Arena Muang Thong Thani.
On top of this, I spoke to a senior figure at the local hospital in Saraburi who claimed the town had its first H1N1 fatality today. This has, however, yet to be reported anywhere that I can see, so the number of fatalities in Thailand remains at 7.

My contact assures me that there have been a number of active cases in Saraburi but today is the first time the province has been named an infected zone.

With Thailand currently on holiday until Thursday for the start of the Buddhist retreat, the family and I will be spending the time off cautiously laying low. With an 8 month old in the house, it really isn't worth the risk.


Mike said...

Jon, I have suspected smoke and mirrors here for a while since early statements from the Health Ministry said that no one would die from this flu in Thailand.

If you follow the UK news and look at the plans for tackling the virus there then it does concern me slightly here.

The UK has good primary health care i.e. your local GP and huge stocks of anti-virals. Thailand on the other hand has neither.

Given the hypochondriac attitude of many Thais I can see a wider spread of the virus (the UK is talking about up to 100,000 cases a day by August)with people clogging hospitals and doctors surgeries.

The school where Doy goes are now offering flu vaccine (seasonal variety) and the information supplied suggests it might help with swine flu!

BTW its around 1000 Baht for the jabs.

Ben Shingleton said...

Hi Jon, I have to visit a hospital in Bangkok next week. I've been advised by a wise and good friend to wear a mask....

I'm not planning to argue, you can't be too careful in hospitals (although I didnt even think about it when flying; there were a few covered up on my last trip tho)

Thai expat said...

Thailand as certainly had its fair share of disasters over the last few years i hope they take this virus seriously and not bury there head in the sand as normal

Jon said...

Hi Mike - the vaccines have run dry here. It looks like someone made a catastrophic mistake and under ordered the numbers despite the widespread warnings.

I suspect this is the reason for the 'handling' of information here in Saraburi.

I've heard more people confirm there was a death and yet nothing in the press.

Hey Ben - I'd definitely wear a mask, in fact, I have been doing so. You should see the looks, but mai pen catching the dreaded thing.

Jon said...

Thai expat, sadly it looks like they are taking the easy option and burying their heads. I just hope things don't spiral out of control as they are threatening to right now.