Swine flu kills 24 across Egypt (Update)

February 4, 2014

Egypt's Health Ministry says swine flu has killed 24 people across the country over the past two months.

At a Tuesday news conference, the ministry's head of preventive medicine, Amr Qandeel, said 195 people have been hospitalized with the virus since Dec. 1, 2013. He added that so far the cases had been spread out through several areas, particularly the Nile Delta and Cairo. He encouraged those suffering from flu symptoms to seek medical attention early.

The ministry says that children and young adults are particularly vulnerable. Qandeel also says that two doctors had contracted the illness but that no medical personnel were among the dead.

In 2009, the global swine flu pandemic prompted Egyptian authorities to slaughter around 300,000 pigs previously used to dispose of the city's organic garbage. However, Jason McDonald, spokesman for the Atlanta-based Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, says that the virus is now most often transmitted from human to human, and not through contact with pigs.

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