European Swine Flu Update 8th May 2009 This report captures the situation update from Germany

, UK, France, Italy, Spain, Brussels and Scandinavia. It is compiled from official government and health protection agency sources as well as top line online sources where conversation is taking place on the topic. It seeks to be a brief but authoritative update on the European situation regarding swine flu. For further details please contact Kate Eden for healthcare related queries or Tom McLoughlin for digital related queries:

Kate Eden Tel: 00 44 203 047 2157

Tom McLoughlin Tel: +44 20 3047 2070 Email:

Brussels Health: • • • • • • • 14 new confirmed cases reported from EU and EFTA countries. New cases of in-country transmission reported from Spain (4) and the UK (1). Outside of EU and EFTA countries, 2357 cases are reported, 2333 of which are confirmed. “First sequence-confirmed case of infection with the new influenza A(H1N1) strain in Germany”, published in Eurosurveillance: Initial epidemiological findings in the European Union published in Eurosurveillance: “Update on epidemiological situation in Mexico and the US”, published in Mortality and Morbidity Weekly Report: Various new editorials and articles in the New England Journal of Medicine, online edition:


Health: • • • The Robert Koch Institute has confirmed patient number 10 in its latest update yesterday All patients have a relatively mild form of the influenza and none of the cases is considered to be seriously at risk. From a perspective point of view the analysis hasn’t changed: certain stabilization but still on alert Media: No big news, rather background: From “Pharmacy sales rising due to the new influenza” to “Pig breeding business loosing due the new influenza”

Digital: • Nothing significant to report Italy Health: • No govt update since yesterday

Digital: • The Italian Pharmacists Order Federation suggests following the recommendations of the Health Ministry: avoid the panic and drug race.

France Health: To follow Digital: To follow

UK Health: Confirmed UK Cases as at 07 May 2009 34 • Cases currently under laboratory investigation as at 17:00 06 May 2009 464 *

The Department of Health confirmed two new cases of swine flu in England yesterday. One new case is an adult from the East of England region who recently returned from the United States. The second is a school-aged child from the London region. Both patients have already

received antivirals and are recovering at home. Close contacts of these cases are also receiving antivirals as a precautionary measure. • • There are now 34 confirmed cases in the UK – 30 in England and four in Scotland. Scientists at the Health Protection Agency (HPA) have produced the first genetic fingerprint of the swine flu virus infecting humans across Europe. The virus’s entire genomic sequence will now be studied alongside other genetic information to give a greater understanding of how the virus behaves as it infects individuals. As viruses are transmitted there is potential for them to evolve and change their behaviour. Health secretary Alan Johnson visited the HPA’s National Institute for Biological Standards and Control (NIBSC) this morning to meet researchers working on swine flu.

Digital: • • • British couple who were quarantined in a Hong Kong hotel following a swine flu outbreak said they would be free to leave their "cell" on Friday night. Link Chief medical officer, Sir Liam Donaldson has said that Swine flu may be more infectious than so far appears in the UK and the current guidance on catching it may have to be changed. Link Conversation is continuing to slow, with a heavy decrease in the volume of tweets on the topic, down from 1.58% of all tweets last week to 0.33% today.

Spain Health: • • There are currently 33 suspected cases and 88 confirmed cases of Swine Flu in Spain. All cases have been diagnosed as mild and patients have responded effectively to treatment. Of the total number of people that have tested positive for the virus, none remain hospitalized.

Digital: • General overview: Swine flu is losing space in on line news sites as situation goes back to normal. In some cases critical voices can be found, remarking that media has created a awareness that has spread panic around the globe. There are articles that covers how Mexico faces economic problems (due to the stoppage of tourism and commerce), such as Spanish newswire EFE. Inhaled vaccine offers new hope in the treatment of the virus. El País informs about an European project to find the Swine-flu vaccine, called Fluvacc. The vaccine, which would be administrated by inhalation, has been developed from cellular farms instead of chicken’s eggs. Right now it is in clinical trial phase, and in two weeks they will know if the vaccine is useful and decide or not to manufacture it. LINK

Brazil and Argentina announce their first infections. It was a question of time, says El País, that the virus reached the 2 main countries in South America. The Brazilian Government confirmed there are 4 positive cases in the country and 24 are suspicious. Argentina has also confirmed that at least one person is infected with the virus. All infected people seem to be fine at this time. LINK Jose Luis de la Serna, Vice director of daily newspaper El Mundo blogs about the coverage the disease has generated in only two weeks. Swine flu has gained more media attention that AIDS. There is, in conclusion and unprecedented alert situation among population criticized by some media and people in the developed countries . Nevertheless, all indicators shows that human race faces a “pandemic age”, says De la Serna and in this context media should inform and offer the most information as possible as a act of responsibility. LINK

Scandinavia Health: • • • • • • No reported cases in Sweden One reported in Denmark The Swedish government has made a deal with GlaxoSmithKline that will assure full vaccine protection to the entire population The government and the Ministry of Social Health Affaires believe that the situation is well under control Media cover has declined over the past 3-4 days No panic situation in the country like it was with “The Bird Flu”.

Digital: • The first case of swine flu has now been confirmed in Sweden – a woman 50 yrs old who had visited the US. She got a mild form and has now recovered. The authorities here are collaborating and updating news regularly.


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