Virus flu claims 81 lives in Mexico; WHO sounds ‘level three’ alert

Virus flu claims 81 lives in MexicoThe new virus flu has caused quite a scare in Mexico, with people preferring to stay indoors during the weekend to avoid catching the infection. The Mexican authorities ordered closure of public buildings, bars and restaurants; and cancellation of large events to stall the further spread of the flu. Schools in and around Mexico City will remain closed till May 6.

The flu outbreak has claimed up to 81 lives in Mexico, and infected over 1,300 people in the city; and 11 in the US.

Felipe Calderon, the President of Mexico, has announced emergency powers to deal with the situation, declaring the government “assumes the faculties and the attributions given by the constitution to the president in case of emergency, like the one we are seeing now.”

To minimize the chances of catching the swine flu, the health authorities have urged people to maintain basic personal hygiene – like covering of mouths while coughing and sneezing, and washing hands regularly.

The World Health Organization (WHO) has already put on alert the health authorities worldwide, cautioning them about the chances of the flu outbreak becoming a global epidemic, and thus, a matter of “international concern.” The ‘level three’ alert sounded by the WHO implies that though there is confirmation about new virus, there is negligible or limited evidence about its transmission.