In late November, an outbreak of influenza A H1N1 was reported Kumasi Academy Senior High School in Kumasi City, Ashanti Region in central Ghana. At that time, 13 cases of severe acute respiratory illness was reported.
The patients presented with fever, cough, headache, joint and body pains, and abnormal chest auscultation.
Since that time, the Ghana Ministry of Health has reported 77 cases with four deaths (case fatality rate 5.2%). The majority of the cases, 66%, were males and over 95% of the cases are teenagers. Thus far, the disease is still localized in the school as no cases have been reported among community members.
Kumasi Academy High School is a mixed sex school with total population of 3,010 (2,814 students including 541 day students, 127 teaching staff and 73 non-teaching staff).
The influenza A H1N1 virus that caused the 2009 pandemic is now a regular human influenza virus circulating seasonally worldwide. However, seasonal influenza spreads easily, with rapid transmission in crowded areas including schools.
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