The number of people with suspected flu has been at epidemic, or near-epidemic levels for the past 6 weeks. A high of 18,420 people sought treatment for flu like illness at government health polyclinics last week (week of 17 May 2010), or 4,000 more patients a week than the norm for this time of the year.
Many of the flu cases involve the pandemic A (H1N1) strain. According to the Ministry of Health, 29 percent of patients in Singapore with flu-like symptoms last week (week of 17 May 2010) had pandemic influenza A/H1N1 virus infection.
Also worrying is the higher number of patients turning up with pneumonia, a more severe form of upper respiratory tract infection.
Comment According to the WHO Pandemic (H1N1) 2009 - update 101, the most active areas of pandemic influenza virus transmission are in parts of South and Southeast Asia, particularly in Bangladesh, Malaysia, and Singapore.