Thursday, July 4, 2013

Argentina - Catamarca: The Ministry of Health does not know if there are cases of #H1N1

[Catamarca is a province of Argentina, located in the northwest of the country.]
July 4, 2013

While Catamarca already confirmed more than 20 cases of Influenza A, even the Ministry of Health could not confirm whether it is the H1N1 subtype, according to what the Department of Epidemiology reported that at the same time stressed that currently Several viruses are in circulation, creating flu-like boxes. 

Patricia Valdez, director of epidemiology in the province, said that to date could not be confirmed if you drive in Catamarca H1N1 subtype, since the samples were Malbr├ín drifts to the Institute and arrive in the coming days. 

Moreover, the official warned that at this time of year the viruses are distributed in the population with a predominance of Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV), which is what occurs in children younger than 2 years on frame flu or bronchiolitis. 
And thus estimated that 60% of children who present these paintings in the country is affected by RSV. In Catamarca recorded a rate ranging between 50 and 70%, depending on seasonality and the harshness of the weather, said Valdez. 
At the same time, said different circulating strains of influenza virus, these agents Guests seeking different populations such as children or the elderly, he said. Among the viruses in circulation, the official said Parainfluenza, Adenovirus, Metapneumovirus and influenza virus A and B with their respective subtypes. 
All of these viruses, he said, causing flu-like tables in general, but treatment must be specific to make each. In this regard, he cautioned that there are many cases without laboratory diagnosis but with a clinical diagnosis. This is a professional medical determination caring for the patient, he said. 

The official acknowledged that no circulation of influenza type A, but until now it was unclear if this is a seasonal or H1N1 strain, which began circulating in the country in 2009. 

told also that all swab samples that tested positive for type A were derived and is waiting for the results. When there is clinical suspicion, he said, a complaint is made ​​compulsory and apply the mechanisms of action, ie a sample and proceeds to the patient's medication while continuing the process of determining viral. The patient is medicated with oseltamivir, an antiviral for influenza A. In this regard, he said that this medication is provided by the health portfolio, since it is not sold in pharmacies.

Thousands of pesos to pay the reagents
Despite the current demand, the Central Laboratory of the ministry does not have reagents for determining the presence of the H1N1 subtype. Lara Sader, in charge of the laboratory, said the property comprises reagents for determining the presence of the strain of the influenza type A and to perform other analyzes. 
Moreover, said he was asked this specific reagent but the problem, said, is the obstacle to imports. 
It is an economic measure imposed by the Ministry of Internal Trade, as the kit to determine the subtype has a cost of $ 21,000 and can only be used up to 50 people, is said to ministerial sources . 
the official added, moreover, that the order was made ​​last year and it was confirmed a month ago.However, he clarified that the Laboratory has reagents to determine the strain of the influenza type A or B, each of which has a cost of $ 1,600 (per patient), as could find this newspaper. 
Sader noted that it is imported inputs and at the same time, there is a great demand across the country.

Deputies requested reports
Recently introduced in the House of Representatives a project to ask the health portfolio a report on prevention and contingency plan pandemic influenza A/H1N1. The request was made ​​by Legislator Silvina Acevedo. 
asked Congresswoman accurate data on actual number of cases detected and treated by the Ministry, detailing zoning thereof; specify whether preventive measures are applied and under what protocols and detail what the measures to take in the winter break during National Day and International Poncho. 
was also requested to be attached to each of the points above the supporting information and certified by the responsible area. 
"the main foundation of my order responds to the need the information officially released to date is only for public transcended made ​​by officials and which take many contradictions. I wonder if these contradictions are only the lack of internal information regarding the current status of this pandemic, "he argued.

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