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Swine Flu Confirmed

7 March 2013

The death last week of Kemal Erureten (57) has been officially confirmed as caused by swine flu.

His blood samples were sent to Turkey for advanced testing and the results came back yesterday.

The Ministry of Health has come out with a statement saying that the tests show the swine flu strain H1N1.

H1N1 is a rapidly spreading virus that caused a world-wide pandemic in 2009. It is called swine flu because the virus is very similar to one found in pigs. Getting the flu vaccine is the best protection against H1N1. Symptoms are similar to flu symptoms.

Although it also circulates in pigs, you cannot get it by eating properly cooked pork products. The H1N1 flu virus spreads between people in the same way as normal flu.

Mr Erureten also suffered from diabetes and chronic bronchitis as well as inflammation of his gallbladder. It is thought that all of these were contributory factors to his death.

The Ministry says that there is no chance of an epidemic along the lines of the 2009 outbreak and that there are large stocks of all the required medicines available in the TRNC.

The major risk groups are pregnant women, children under the age of 5, people over the age of 60 and those suffering with chronic diseases.

Four other people have had their blood samples sent to Turkey and the tests all came back negative.

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