Health Ministry: Swine Flu Spreading

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JERUSALEM, Israel - A Health Ministry report released Wednesday cited a 3.6 percent rise in swine flu cases in the past two weeks.

To date, 2,148 people have contracted the H1N1 virus in Israel, with 50 percent of the victims under 30 years of age. Only 5 percent of 1,500 cases are older than 50, and slightly more men than women have contracted the disease.

According to Wednesday's report, the virus appears to be spreading the most quickly in the north, especially in Haifa, as well as in Jerusalem, with the largest number of cases in the central region.

Statistics indicate a fourfold increase from two weeks ago in the number of people contracting the virus each week

In the Tel Aviv area, there are nearly 700 new cases a week, 2.2 times more than two weeks ago. In Jerusalem, 355 cases, 4.4 more than two weeks ago. In the northern port city of Haifa, the number rose to nearly 350 new cases a week, an almost 8 percent rise from two weeks ago.

In southern Israel, 332 new cases, up 3.5 percent from two weeks ago, and in the north, 244 cases a week, five times more than two weeks ago.

At the end of June, 64 percent of the patients contracted the disease inside Israel, but by the end of July 91.5 percent were infected in the country.

Seven of the 29 patients in intensive care units have died from complications of the virus.

The number of people with flu symptoms seeking medical care has tripled, with 3,360 reporting to doctors in the past week.

Source: Haaretz


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