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6 July 2007

Department of Health warns of rapid flu strain

The Department of Health is advising parents to seek early medical attention for young children who are showing signs of a respiratory illness.

The call follows the death of three children under five years of age in the Perth metropolitan area over the past few days from what is yet to be confirmed as influenza A.

Director of Communicable Disease Control Dr Paul Van Buynder said the speed at which the illness had progressed in these children had caused concern among health professionals.

“While we do not want to create unnecessary panic, it is important for parents to be aware that the disease can cause serious illness within 24 hours,” he said.

“Parents whose children have cold or flu-like symptoms, including a cough and a fever, should see their general practitioner.”

The Department of Health is also advising parents of young children to see their GP for a flu vaccination if they had not already done so.

Influenza Fact Sheet, 9 July 2007 [Word / 260KB]

Influenza

For more information, or advice on your nearest after hours medical clinic call 1800 020 080 or 1800 022 222.

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