The number of confirmed cases of swine flu in Qatar has crossed 450, a senior official of the Supreme Council of Health said yesterday.
The Council has, meanwhile, issued guidelines to schools on how to deal with suspected cases of swine flu.
“Every day we have a few cases. But the good thing is that very few patients needed hospitalization, which means that infection was mild,” said Mohammed Al Thani, director of the Public Health Department at the Council.
He said about 90 percent of the confirmed cases were people coming from other countries.
Asked why the cases of swine flu in Qatar were high, Al Thani said, “People here travel a lot and many of them contract the disease from a foreign country. The number of cases is on the rise also because we are successful in detecting majority of the cases.”
In its guidelines, the Council said any student or staff at school with a fever above 37.8 degrees Celsius and flu-like illness (i.e. symptoms of cough, sore throat, headache, body ache) should be considered a suspected case.
The first step required is to immediately isolate the case. The affected person should be made to wear a surgical mask and made to sit in an isolation/waiting room.
The case should be notified to the Communicable Disease Control Section at SCH by filling in the notification form provided to the schools and faxed to 4070-812.
If the case is a student, the parents of the student should be asked to come and collect the child.
The SCH’s information sheet should be given to parents for care of the H1N1 flu-affected child at home.
The child should be taken by the parents to the primary health centre for appropriate treatment.
If the case is a staff member, it must be referred to the primary health centre and the patient should be kept in isolation at home.
The school must ensure that the affected child or staff member returns to school only after at least seven days from the onset of symptoms and the patient has been free of symptoms for at least 24 hours without the use of fever reducing medicines.
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