The Department of Health said yesterday it could propose a nationwide school closure if the A(H1N1), or “swine flu,” epidemic intensifies after the end of the summer break
“Schools will be the focus of epidemic control after the summer vacation and we do not rule out suggesting that the Ministry of Education shut down schools throughout the country if the swine flu outbreak gets more serious,” Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Director-General Kuo Hsu-sung (郭旭崧) said.
Kuo said the swine flu virus is spreading rapidly and mutating at a worrying rate. The number of regular flu cases recorded in Taiwan has reached several thousand, but most are mild cases, he said.
Based on those countries’ experiences, Kuo said, the CDC has elaborated plans to deal with a possible intensification of infections, particularly after local schools reopen in the fall.
“Campus flu infections are most likely to trigger ‘community cluster’ infections, so we could suggest that the Ministry of Education close all schools to contain the further spread of the virus,” he said, adding that children who have developed fever should stay at home and refrain from attending summer school projects.
Taiwan reported its first severe swine flu case on Friday. The 34-year-old man developed a fever, cough and sore throat on July 2 and was hospitalized on July 9 with abnormally fast breathing. Kuo said the man’s vital signs have improved, but that he remains in intensive care.
FATAL FIRE: The health department is trying to contact the inspector who visited the site of the illegal nursing home to ask why they did not advise follow-up checks The Taipei City Government yesterday said that a health department inspector last year had visited the site of a long-term care facility in Neihu District (內湖) after receiving a report questioning its status. A fire broke out at the facility on Tuesday afternoon, killing three people. The Taipei Fire Department said that it received a report about a fire on the first floor of a four-story residential building on Kangning Road Sec. 1 at 2:38pm on Tuesday, firefighters arrived at 2:43pm and the fire was put out by 3:07pm. The firefighters found three men in beds and rushed them to hospital for
Taipei City Councilor Wang Hao (王浩) of the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) on Monday called for security improvements to the MRT, as fare evasion has increased more than 13-fold on the metropolitan railway system over the past five years. Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) has spoken out against fare evasion and other contraventions of MRT regulations, but since he took office in 2015 the number of contraventions has more than doubled, Wang said, adding that there were 537 cases in 2015 compared with 959 last year. A video was posted to YouTube in June showing people how to evade paying a fare,
FEELING MISUNDERSTOOD: Media speculation has fueled confusion about the KMT’s reasons for skipping a Chinese forum and delaying an AIT meeting, party sources said The Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) on Sunday said that it is not seeking to improve relations with the US or China at the expense of the other, and that its relations with the countries would be topic-based. The party has faced questions over its foreign policy after it on Monday last week announced its withdrawal from the annual Straits Forum and delayed planned talks with the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT). The party has also taken a tough stance on the importation of US meat containing ractopamine, while also lambasting China for increasing its military activity in and around the Taiwan Strait. Following
Yuchi Township (魚池) fishers have appealed to the Nantou County Government for help in dealing with an invasive fish species in Sun Moon Lake (日月潭), where it has devastated the local ecosystem. Fishers at Sun Moon Lake have been using electrofishing in an attempt to eliminate the giant snakehead fish — found in Africa and Southeast Asia — but they have struggled to keep up with the growing population of the species, which breeds during September and October, the county government said on Monday. The county has contacted researchers at National Tsing Hua University, saying it hoped they could come up