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NICD allays fears raised over swine flu cases in Gauteng

The NICD's Lucille Bloomberg says there is a negative connotation with the word swine flu, raising unnecessary panic but in fact it's the same as a normal seasonal flu.

A file picture showing the vaccine against influenza A (H1N1) virus (swine flu) in Mexico City. Picture: AFP

JOHANNESBURG – The National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD) has reacted to concerns raised over reported swine flu cases in Gauteng, labelling them as nothing unusual or to be alarmed about.

Eyewitness News is aware of at least eight cases of the H1N1 virus diagnosed in Johannesburg just this month.

Swine flu is a strain of an influenza virus which has the same symptoms as normal flu.

The NICD's Lucille Bloomberg says there is a negative connotation with the word swine flu, raising unnecessary panic but in fact, it's the same as a normal seasonal flu.

“People have this misconception that it’s different but it’s part of the seasonal flu menu, so to speak, every year.”

Bloomberg says influenza is generally uncomplicated and only requires some good rest and treatment.

She says people with a compromised immune system should have been immunised before the flu season to avoid any complications.

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