Tuesday, April 28, 2009

World battles swine flu as death toll rises

(CNN) -- Governments and health officials around the world continued to take steps Tuesday against the outbreak of swine flu that has killed scores of people in Mexico and spread to the U.S., Europe and possibly Asia.

By early Tuesday, the swine flu outbreak in Mexico was suspected in 152 deaths and more than 1,600 illnesses, its health minister told reporters.

While authorities wait to verify whether the virus is responsible for all the deaths, the number of confirmed cases is sobering: 19 infected; seven others dead; and thousands flooding hospitals.

So far, at least 98 cases have been confirmed worldwide, including 50 in the United States; six in Canada; 11 in New Zealand; two each in Spain and the United Kingdom; and one in Israel. None has yet resulted in death. Read what steps countries are taking

With at least 11 other countries suspecting infections, the World Health Organization on Monday raised its alert level from three to four on its six-level scale.

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