Delta Township Reports Third H1N1 Case

By Salai Thant Zin 2 August 2017

NYAUNGDON, Irrawaddy Region — A three-year-old boy has become the third person in Nyaungdon Township, Irrawaddy Region, to contract H1N1 influenza.

The boy, who is from a ward just outside the township, was admitted to the local hospital at 6:30 p.m. on July 28. After being diagnosed with H1N1 flu symptoms, he was transferred to Yangon Children’s Hospital.

“He had breathing problems and a high fever, so he was transferred to the children’s hospital in Yangon,” U Maung Maung, spokesperson of Nyaungdon Hospital, told The Irrawaddy. “Then the hospital informed us that the boy had contracted H1N1 flu.”

The township health department educated the boy’s family and neighbors on the disease on Tuesday and put them under medical observation, said U Maung Maung.

He said out of the other two cases in the Irrawaddy Delta township, one was a headmistress of a school in Moe Ma Kha village who died of the virus and another person is receiving treatment in Yangon, but declined to give further details.

The recent outbreak of the disease has claimed 12 confirmed deaths countrywide as of August 1.

Lower House lawmakers discussed the proposal of Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP) MP U Thein Htun last Friday urging the government to boost awareness of the disease in public places.

The proposal failed, however, with 146 voting in favor, 231 against, and four abstaining.

Dr. San Shwe Win, chairman of the Lower House Health and Sports Development Committee, told the Parliament that the ministry is “carrying out its duties with complete accountability and responsibility and without pressure from any agency.” He added that its actions should be recorded.

Cases of H1N1—known as swine flu—have also been recorded in the Irrawaddy Region townships of Pathein, Pyapon, Dedaye, Pantanaw and Kyonpyaw. Irrawaddy capital Pathein has had six infections—the highest rate of the region, followed by Nyaungdon.

Thirteen H1N1 cases were recorded in the region in July, and six of them were fatal, according to the regional government.

“We still don’t know how the flu has transmitted to people in Nyaungdon, but we immediately go to places where the patients were found, and check if there are more people feeling sick. We have made arrangements so that the people in neighborhood [where the patient is from] can receive medical treatment immediately once they feel sick,” said U Maung Maung.

H1N1 flu symptoms are the same as seasonal flu, including coughing, fever, sore throat, stuffy or runny nose, muscle pains, headache, chills, fatigue and breathing problems.

The health ministry has encouraged people to wear masks and wash their hands frequently, cover mouths when coughing and sneezing, and avoid crowded places.

Translated from Burmese by Thet Ko Ko.