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Second Australian swine flu case confirmed

  • Nick Miller
  • May 20, 2009 - 1:29PM

Two Sydney women have been confirmed as Australia's latest victims of swine flu.

Both women were diagnosed after returning from a trip to the United States and has been treated with the antiviral drug Tamiflu.

Health authorities are testing 13 people from NSW and other states who were travelling with them.

Earlier ir was announced a nine-year-old Victorian boy had become the second person in Australia to be diagnosed with swine flu.

The boy returned from the US earlier this month with his family, health minister Daniel Andrews announced today.

"The boy is recovering at home as he was not ill enough to be hospitalised,'' Mr Andrews said.

The child's symptoms appeared on Monday, and the health department said he was not believed to be infectious when he returned to Australia on May 12.

His family have been tested and treated with anti-viral medicine. Some are displaying flu-like symptoms, and all are under home quarantine.

Victoria's acting Chief Health Officer, Dr Rosemary Lester, said that test results from the rest of the family were expected during the next few days.

Government officials are contacting all passengers on QF94 from Los Angeles to Melbourne on May 12 who were sitting close to the boy.

"Based on what we know about this form of influenza, passengers on the flight are highly unlikely to become unwell because we strongly believe that the boy was not infectious when he travelled,'' Dr Lester said.

Any other passenger on the same flight with concerns should call the Swine Influenza Hotline on 180 2007.

Final confirmation that the boy has human swine influenza H1N1 is expected to come from the World Health Organisation  Referencing Laboratory in Melbourne later today.

There is one other Victorian test result pending for a possible human swine influenza case as part of the precautionary testing program.

with Jonathan Dart

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