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article imageNew cases of swine flu in Japan and China, young most affected

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By Michael Krebs     May 17, 2009 in Health
As the H1N1 virus continues to spread throughout the United States, new cases are being reported in China and Japan - most affecting teenagers. Japan announces school closures.
Japanese health officials announced the closure of several schools in the Kobe district after 21 more students reported symptoms of swine flu in the Kobe and Osaka areas. Officials in Japan also reported the first case of local transmission in the country when a high school student in Kobe tested positive for the H1N1 virus.
"We have not determined how the virus spread in the region, and we are doing our best to track down the route of the infections and contain them," Chief Cabinet Secretary Takeo Kawamura said, according to a report in The Money Times.
Meanwhile China's Health Ministry reported the country's third case of swine flu on Saturday, after an 18-year-old woman became ill. The woman had recently returned to Beijing from New York. She has since been hospitalized in Beijing.
The World Health Organization has confirmed 8,480 cases of the Influenza A H1N1 flu worldwide, with 72 confirmed deaths. The vast majority of cases have been in Mexico and the United States.
"The WHO said Mexico has reported 2,895 confirmed cases including 66 deaths. The United States has reported 4,714 confirmed cases including four deaths. Canada has 496 confirmed cases and Costa Rica nine cases, both with one death," Reuters reported.
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