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China outlines tighter anti-flu measures following WHO's pandemic declaration


    China on Friday, June 12 promised to increase efforts to stem the A/H1N1 virus after the World Health Organization (WHO) raised the flu alert to its highest level.

    Mao Qun'an, a spokesman with the Health Ministry, said the country "understands, supports and cooperates with" the world health body's pandemic declaration, pledging to further beef up its flu prevention and control work.

    The WHO on Thursday raised its pandemic alert from phase 5 to phase 6, the highest level, formally declaring the widely spreadingA/H1N1 influenza has developed into a global pandemic.

    "As the objective for the current stage, we'll endeavor to decrease domestic cases, prevent community transmission, step up treatment of serious cases and cope with possible future changes of the epidemic," Mao told a press conference here.

    He said the previous policy of "keeping the virus outside the border and preventing its spread within the country" had proved to be effective and practical and would be continued.

    As of 8 a.m. Friday, 13 Chinese mainland provinces and municipalities had reported 126 confirmed A/H1N1 flu cases, of whom 60 had recovered and been discharged from hospitals. There have been no deaths.

    Mao outlined concrete steps, including improving the joint prevention and control mechanism at different regions and different levels, increasing the number of labs and designated hospitals nationwide, enhancing medical workers' diagnosis and treatment ability to avoid fatalities, increasing drug stockpiles and vaccination production, and increasing public health awareness and winning public support.

    As of Thursday, 75 countries and regions had officially reported 28,774 cases of A/H1N1 infections, including 144 deaths.

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