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16 fresh swine flu cases reported in Malaysia

world Updated: Aug 06, 2009 20:44 IST

Malaysian authorities are concerned that all the fresh 16 cases of swine flu reported in the last 24 hours have been locally transmitted, and fear that the haze around parts of the country might worsen the situation.

Health director-general Ismail Merican said 16 new locally transmitted cases were reported over the last 24 hours due to swine flu.

Ismail also warned the public against taking anti-viral medication as it can lead to resistance to the drugs as reported in some countries.

The total number of swine flu cases reported in Malaysia are 1,476.

Of the 1,476 cases reported, 1,413 have recovered while 10 are in ICU and 28 receiving treatment in isolation wards, the minister said.

Authorities have said the worsening haze condition complicated "an already very difficult situation".

"Polluted air can result in an increase of respiratory ailments - a situation which will cause the victims to be more vulnerable in the event of a fatal H1N1 virus attack.

"The H1N1 virus attacks the lung-cells directly. It then causes serious pneumonia. Those with respiratory ailments have weaker immune systems and the attack can be more serious," an official said.