11 Jul 2009

School closed in Samoa over swine flu fears

8:10 am on 11 July 2009

The Ministry of Health in Samoa has temporarily closed Vaipouli College on Savaii island after health staff identified thirty eight hostel students from the school presenting with symptoms of influenza.

The ministry of health says infection with H1N1 is highly suspected.

Confirmation of infection with the H1N1 virus will not be received for another week at least whilst the sample specimens taken from students are shipped to the ESR laboratory in Wellington New Zealand for testing.

The acting CEO of the Ministry of health Professor Pelenatete Stowers says the school hosted visitors from Australia and New Zealand within a week of the outbreak of influenza like illness in students.

The 38 students have now been quarantined within the hostel grounds, and have been assessed by a team of doctors and nurses.

They are reportedly making good recovery after being given with TamiFlu tablets.

Fifteen other people consisting of staff and helpers have also been quarantined along with the affected students.