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Volcan baby dies from Zika. See attached article http://www.newsroompanama.com/news/panama/fourth-h1n1-death-in-chiriqui



Fourth H1N1 death in Chiriqui

5000 vaccinated in Baru area

THE FOURTH death from the H1N1 flu was recorded in Chiriqui on Monday February 8 reports the Ministry of Health (MoH)  . The victim was an infant less than two months old.

Pablo Acosta, an MoH epidemiologist, said that this infant was from Volcán and  showed symptoms of the flu on January  22, and was hospitalized six days later.

Acosta said that tests confirmed that the infant had the H1N1 flu.

There have been 44 cases of the flu in the province, but no new cases in the last 10 days.


Edited by Admin_01
quoted the cited news report
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Panama H1N1 health alert

Posted on June 1, 2016 in Panama

MoH press conference issued alert
Post Views: 39

THE RAPID increase in cases of severe acute respiratory infection (SARI), and the prevalence of influenza A (H1N1), has led Panama’s Ministry of Health (MoH) to issue a health alert.

Forty three cases have been confirmed. Of these, 35 people are hospitalized in various hospitals in the capital (Arnulfo Arias Madrid Hospital of Pediatrics, San Fernando, National Hospital AND Sano Tomas.) At least 15 are in intensive care.

At a Tuesday June 1 press conference, health authorities said they have a million vaccines to address the situation.

In Panama there is currently an epidemic not an outbreak. What has happened is there is a higher frequency of virus circulation, especially the A (H1N1), according to the MoH director of Epidemiology, Lourdes Garcia.

Meanwhile, the director of Epidemiology, Social Security, Rudick Kant said the virus that is circulating is the same that arrived in the country in 2009.

Signs and symptoms caused by influenza include fever, cough, sore throat and runny nose in children can cause otitis media, nausea and vomiting. The duration is approximately three to seven days.

Complications from influenza virus most common are: pneumonia, broncho pneumonia or bronchiolitis, sinusitis and otitis media; these conditions may worsen and cause death.

Reference: http://www.newsroompanama.com/news/panama/panama-h1n1-health-alert

P.S., In looking at my calendar, June 1st was a Wednesday. Hmmmm? They really should proof their copy before posting.

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5 hours ago, JudyS said:

Is there any place in Boquete to get a flu shot that includes H1N1?

Marcelyn and I got our shots stateside, so we can't speak from firsthand experience, but we have been told that flu shots are available at the CSS clinics, specifically including the Boquete facility (across the street from the Bomberos).

Our Houston doctor warned us that 2016 was going to be a particularly bad year, flu-wise, and just about "ordered" us to get the shots. I typically do not get flu shots but did this year. Marcelyn always gets a flu shot.

We were told by the flu shot lady that the "formula" (recipe, strain, batch??, not sure what the right word is here) for 2016 was well prepared.

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Fourth Flu virus death, 35 hospitalized

Posted on June 3, 2016 in Alerts, Panama

Post Views: 47

A ‘SITUATION ROOM’  has been set up at the  Social Security Fund (CSS facility in Clayton, following another two deaths from  influenza A (H1N1), bringing the total so far to four ,with 35 people hospitalized.

The Ministry of Health (MoH) epidemiology department disclosed the deaths of a woman of 59 years and a man 36, in the intensive care unit of the Arnulfo Arias Madrid Hospital Complex Dr. Rudick Kant, head of Epidemiology, said that the male patient lived in José Domingo Espinar, while the woman  living in Juan Diaz, had other hematologic complications.

Health clinics are extending hours to provide vaccinations.

Signs and symptoms caused by influenza include fever, cough, sore throat and runny nose. In children  it can cause otitis media, nausea and vomiting. The duration is approximately 3 to 7 days.

Complications from influenza virus most common are: pneumonia, bronchopneumonia or bronchiolitis, sinusitis, otitis media.


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117 hospitalized in flu epedemic, 5 deaths

Posted on June 5, 2016 in Panama

A 63-years old woman was the latest victim of the flu epidemic at this hospital
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THE MNISTRY of HEALTH (MoH) has invested $3.5 million in  vaccines for the most vulnerable  as the  A H1N1 flu epidemic continues to spread.


By Saturday, June 4, the   death toll had climbed to five and 117 people were hospitalized, 22 of them in intensive care.


Those  most at risk  are  children under 5, People older than 60  or those who have a chronic disease that can worsen the flu.


These people can you go to a health center for free MoH vaccine.


Health Minister Francisco Javier Terrientes reports the acquisition of half a million additional flu shots is  pending with the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO to  be distributed throughout the country. The new batch of vaccines will be in the country next week.


2,552 boxes of Tamiflu, antiviral treatment against influenza A H1N1, were distributed in different units of the Social Security Fund (CSS) as a contingency measure to deal with the virus.


Meanwhile, some hospitals have restricted visiting hours. The National Cancer Institute, has suspended visits before noon and restricted evening hours from 5:00 to 6:00 p.m. with only one person per patient.


The Nicolas Solano hospital in Panama West has restricted, visits to the emergency room and visits to hospitalized patients are limited to 30 minutes.


Health authorities have called on the population to follow habits to containt of infection, such as washing hands, covering the mouth when sneezing or coughing, seeking   medical attention whwn afflicted with a cold and with trouble breathing, and to stay away from the crowds and go to hospitals if you are sick.


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Line up for flu shots as 197 hospitalized

Posted on June 6, 2016 in Panama

 Post Views: 50

THE NUMBER  of people hospitalized with the AH1N1  flu virus  jumped to 197   on  Monday. June 6 said Panama’s Ministry of Health (MoH).


The patients are in Ministry of Health, Social Security and private hospitals said Health Minister Francisco Javier


Government health clinics have extended operating hours to provide free vaccinations to those most at risk, young children, those over 60 and people with chronic health conditions. Terrientes said that one million doses were distributed throughout the country.


Long line ups have were recorded at Health  Centers throughout the day.


Another 500,000 vaccines should arrive in the next two weeks when vaccinations will become more widely available.


Health authorities have called on the population to help  contain the spread  of ithe virus , such as washing hands, covering the mouth when sneezing or coughing, seeking  medical attention if there are signs of a  cold and trouble with  breathing,  and staying  away from crowds.


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10 dead, 310 hospitalized in flu outbreak

Posted on June 9, 2016 in Panama

The Ebola referral center re-opened as beds become short
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Health clinics are working extra hours to provide free flu vaccinations

AT LAST COUNT  over 310 people  have been hospitalized with influenza in the last 24 hours and five   more have died from A(H1N1), bringing the number of deaths to  10  says a Ministry of Health (MoH) report.

The pressure on available bed has forced the Ministry to utilize a facility built for cases of Ebola in the December 24 Township

One of the deaths caused by A (H1N1) is a one year old child from, Nata, Cocle.

The Cocle  regional MoH director, Ana Maria Martin, said that the girl arrived at the Regional Hospital Rafael Estevez in Aguadulce  and was later moved to Panama City, but died on the way.

The other death from the disease is a 78 year-old male.

Health Minister, Francisco Javier Terrientes, confirmed that throughout the country there are 310 people hospitalized because of influenza.

Of that total, 176 are in MoH facilities and 134 in the Social Security Fund (CSS).

A total of 35 people are in intensive care (21 in the MoH and 14 in CSS).

Terrientes said that despite the increase in cases, the Ministry still cannot say that it is facing an epidemic.

He said  that the Cabinet approved a health alert became  official for the whole country.

The decree authorizes  the MoH to seek the support of all government agencies in promotion and disease prevention and exempted from some requirements to make purchases required to address the health situation.

Minister said the World Health Organization will deliver 500,000 doses of influenza vaccine, but local purchases  have been made in the private sector.

Terrientes said that although thy don’t want to deny the  vaccine to  anyone, they  are giving priority to children under 5 years of age, those over 60 years of age, pregnant women, people with chronic diseases and health workers.

Following the epidemiological alert for cases caused by the virus A (H1N1), health authorities took the decision to reactivate the Referral Center for Infectious Diseases, located on the fourth floor of the hospital Irma de Lourdes Tzanetatos, in  December 24, east of the capital city.

The Referral Center for Infectious Diseases was created at a cost of $1.2 million dollars during  the ebola global emergency to handle potential  cases of ebola.


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Flu kills 12, hospitalizes 547

Posted on June 10, 2016 in Panama

Post Views: 55

ANOTHER  62 patients  were  admitted to Panama hospitals and two mor died  in the 24 hours before a Ministry of Health (MoH) press conference on Friday, June 10. Three of the new cases are  in intensive care.

This brings to  547 the number of people hospitalized: 213 in MoH facilities   314 in the Social Security Fund (CSS), and the rest in private medical centers. Of these, 57 remain in intensive care.

The death toll also rose to 12 (seven women and five men), said Lourdes Garcia, director of Epidemiology MoH.

The two new deaths are men, one living in the metropolitan area and one in Panama West, where there was no previous record of deaths. That brings the total of deaths since Monday to 7.

Garcia said that 50% are people 60 years or older and all had some risk factor. The other half were between 23 and 82 years and not had these factors.

The deceased came from Cocle (1), Colon (1), Panama Oeste (1), metropolitan region (5) and San Miguelito (4).

Itza Barahona de Mosca, Director General of Health, said that the country is facing an “unusual” situation in the behavior of Influenza, an acute viral inflammatory infectious disease that can be caused by influenza virus A, B or C. However, he stressed that due to the rainy season circulate other respiratory viruses are circulating.

Signs and symptoms of influenza include fever, headache, muscle aches, cough and runny. The duration is between three and seven days.

She  called on the population to remain calm and to take into account the preventive measures that have been spreading.

Vaccines are available for free at all Social Security and MoH health facilities. Private clinics charge from $130-$50

She said  that no wanted to deny the vaccine to anyone, however, the priority is to the  vulnerable (under five years, over 60, pregnant  people those  with chronic diseases and health workers.

The conference also reiterated that classes will resume on Monday  June13 next, after the  school break, despite the influenza  health alert.

The Ministry of Education has informed  parents that they will be called immediately if students in the classroom have symptoms, to take their child or children home.


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President Varela announced today in David that the government has ordered 1,500,000 vaccinations against the H1N1 strain of influenza. He would like to see everyone protected.

Currently 541 people have been hospitalized, 57 of whom remain in intensive care. Seven men and five women have died to date from H1N1.

Las nuevas vacunas llegarán dentro de semana y media.


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13th flu death prompts no kissing alert

Posted on June 12, 2016 in Panama

Clinics across the country are open extra hours
Post Views: 55

GREETING KISSES and handshakes should be avoided during the current flu  outbreak  say Panama health authorities after the announcement of the 13th death from the A H1N1 virus  on  Sunday, June 12.

The patient had been  hospitalized for five days in the Hospital Rafael Hernandez in David, Chiriqui. Reinel Camargo, medical director of the hospital said the patient had a compromised disease and came with a “serious respiratory problem.”

Before the weekend the Ministry of Health (MoH)  had reported 12 deaths and 547 hospitalized for influenza.

On Sunday the first case of influenza in Bocas del Toro was reported and in common with the rest of the country all government clinics are extending hurs and offering free vaccinations.

Meanwhile the MoH recommends

– Avoid unnecessary contact, such as kissing and greeting handshakes.

– frequent hand washing  with soap and water.

– Cover your mouth and nose when sneezing or coughing (use tissue or your elbow).

– If respiratory symptoms such as coughing, sneezing, runny nose, fever, difficulty breathing, occur you need to go to the health center or nearest polyclinic.

– Don’t self-medicate.

– Avoid places with high concentration of people if you are sick.


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Home » News » Panama » FLU death toll rises to 18: situation “normal”

FLU death toll rises to 18: situation “normal”

Posted on June 13, 2016 in Panama

 Post Views: 50

THE DEATH TOLL  from the influenza outbreak climbed to 18 on Monday June 13, with two deaths recorded in Colon but the number of affected patients is described as “normal.”


West Panama, , David, Santiago, San Miguelito and Freshwater, are some of the areas where deaths have occurred.


At a Presidency press conference, Nestor Sosa, director general of the Gorgas Memorial Institute for Health Studies , reported that of the 18 deaths, 15 were from people who had risk factors.


By the time of the conference  607 patients had been hospitalized with  Severe Acute Respiratory Infection, 220 of whom  have already been discharged. 35% of the cases were related to A H1N1 flu.


Sosa said that the health authorities have not declared a health epidemic because the number of patients so far  is ‘normal’.


“The unusual factor is the number of people requiring hospitalization,” Sosa said.


However the alert continues because of the unusual increase in the number of people affected.


Since mid-April, 800,000 people have been vaccinated against influenza. It is expected that in the coming days, 1,180,000 vaccines arrive in the country to be applied to the entire population.


Health authorities reported that so far no recommendations have been  made to suspend the opening ceremony of the third set of locks of the Panama Canal, on  June 26 . However, they requested sick people refrain from attending the event, to prevent further infections. Over 21,000 tickets have been distributed  to the public and special guests including many heads of state, and celebrities.


Authorities  also ruled out the closure of borders because of the virus


Meanwhile scores of thousands of students returned to school on Monday, but teachers at one school in Chorrera voted to send the children home.


Meanwhile Itza Barahona de Mosca, MoH  National Director of Health emphasized that it  “is not charging for injections, nor for the vaccine card.”


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Health MInister resigns

Posted on June 14, 2016 in Panama

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IN THE MIDST of an influenza outbreak  in which the H1N1 virus has claimed 18 lives Panama’s Health Minister  Francisco Javier Terrientes,   has submitted his resignation to President Juan Carlos Varela.

The outbreak, which has been called an “epidemiological alert”   has, until Monday, June 13, hospitalized 607, of whom 220 have already been discharged.

West Panama, Colon, David, Santiago, San Miguelito and Aguadulce, are some of the areas where deaths have occurred.

Health clinics have been working extra hours to provide free vaccination to  scores of thousands  of people.

The announcement of Terrientes ’resignation came on Tuesday after the president  announced that the Health Committee for Coordination and Communication on Influenza confirmed that, a consignment of 300,000  influenza vaccines will arrive from France on Friday.

During the weekend vaccinations will be available to  the entire population,  in premises of the Ministry of Health and Social Security.


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16 hours ago, Keith Woolford said:

The Minister of Health presented his resignation today amid what now appears to be a national health crisis.

Let's hope President Varela has a competent replacement waiting in the wings.


Varela names new cabinet members

Miguel Mayo and Enrique Carles will be the new ministers of Health and Agricultural Development, respectively, President Juan Carlos Varela announced Wednesday.

They will replace Minister of Health Francisco Javier Terrientes and Minister of Agricultural Development Jorge Arango, who both have resigned.

Terrientes resigned for professional reasons. Today is his last day in office.

Arango's resignation will be effective July 1. Varela said he will seek to appoint him to another position as he is one of the most respected producers in the agricultural industry.

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Now we know.

Health Minister replaced after soccer jaunt

PRESIDENT Juan Carlos Varela  moved quickly this week to replace Minister of Health Francisco Javier Terrientes, as social media and political commentaotors  pounced on the man who, in the midst of the H1N1 health crisis,  left his post to attend a  Copa America  soccer game in Chicago.

The influenza outbreak which he has refused to call an epidemic,   has led to 18 deaths and nearly 700 patients hospitalized as the country struggles to obtain sufficient vaccine to continue the mass immunization program with health centers working overtime to cope.

Terrientes submitted his resignation to the Cabinet Council on Wednesday June 14, His resignation was   described as “ for professional reasons”

His successor Miguel Mayo was announced the same day.

The ex-Minister cleared his desk on Thursday He was followed to the exit door by his. deputy.

Minister of Agricultural Development Jorge Arango, also resigned on Wednesday, but his departure from government  office will likely be short lived.

His  resignation will be effective July 1. Varela said he will seek to appoint him to another position as he is one of the most respected producers in the agricultural industry.He will be suceeded by Enrique Carles

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Color me skeptic. Remember the last swine flu worldwide epidemic, about seven years ago? After a few months, various governments were looking to sell off huge amounts of unused, unwanted vaccine. The World Health Organization was criticized for calling "Wolf", and their response was that the virus could have mutated into something rally serious.  But then, the vaccine would be useless anyway. Question: how many of the "700 patients hospitalized" quoted by President Varela are still in hospital? H1N1 is just a different name for swine flu, but people forget, and fear is a powerful tool to sell stuff. Just sayin'

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671 with severe flu, death toll hits 22,

Posted on June 15, 2016 in Panama

 Post Views: 181

THE NUMBER  of deaths from A ( H1N1) influenza  has  jumped to 22  and 671 people are affected with severe respiratory symptoms said the Ministry of Health (MoH) on  Wednesday June 15.


Two days earlier the government reported that 18 people had died. West Panama, Colon, David, Santiago, San Miguelito and Aguadulce are some of the areas where deaths occurred


The new victims were reported in the provinces of Veraguas, Colon and Panama West. According to health authorities each of the patients had additional risk factors.


The MoH has reiterated that the priority for vaccination are people who are in risk groups, ie, less than five years, over 60, pregnant women and people with chronic diseases.



Vaccination is free and available at health centers across the country which have extended hours to cope with the demand.


An additional 300,000 units of vaccine obtained from France will be arriving in Panama on Friday, June 17, and clinics will be working through the weekend.


On the other hand, after several conversations health authorities have determined that the closure of educational institutions in the country is not recommended.


Students returned to school on Monday June 13 after the long break


Nestor Sosa, a spokesman for the special commission created by the Government to address the issue of influenza, said the decision not to close the schools is supported by the Pan American Health Organizations and Global Health.


Meanwhile teachers in numerous schools in Chepo, Arrijain and Chorrera have closed classes for up to two week citing concerns with inadequate or mal-functioning toilets and washing facilities in addition to health authority advice for people to avoid crowded places. They also say most students have not been vaccinated against A (H1N1).


Reports are spreading of other teachers meeting to decide whether or not to carry on with classes.


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Flu deaths climb

Posted on June 17, 2016 in Panama

Post Views: 81

THE NUMBER of deaths from the flu virus A (H1N1) rose to 23 0n Friday June 17, and 30 patients remain in intensive care.

To date 824 people have been hospitalized of whom 375 have been released.

While the education ministry has  asked schools to have more confidence in health authorities who are following WHO guidelines which  indicate there is no need to close education centers, another institution, José Antonio Remón Cantera College  in Paitilla  decided to close follow the example of over a dozen in  Chorrerea and Arraijan and close  its doors.

Teachers met on the evening shift on Thursday June 16 to determine if conditions  on campus were suitable  to continue teaching classes.

They took into account factors such as the state of the health infrastructure and the number of students who are vaccinated,

Fernando Abrego, a member of the Association of Professors of the Republic of Panama (ASOPROF), said they decided not to receive students until next Friday.

The evaluation found that in the whole school only two toilets were working.

The student population attending Remon Cantera is 389 premedia level  (seventh, eighth and ninth grade) and 600 middle level (sophomores, juniors and seniors).

According to the student census, conducted by teachers, there are only 67 students vaccinated: 20 in premedia and 47 others.

The decision of educators was communicated to the principal, Luis Mosquera, and Professor Petra Serracín, director of the educational center region of Panama.

The school  located in via Israel was founded in 1971.

New supplies of vaccine were due in Panama on Friday night, and health clinics across the country will be open through the weekend with 500 staff on standby to administer  free shots.


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OPINION; Flu vaccine priority

Posted on June 18, 2016 in Panama

Post Views: 99

hoyporhoy La Prensa, June 18

TODAY,CIVIC CALM, solidarity and altruism must prevail because of  the small number of A (H1N1) vaccines available. 

Citizens and leaders must lead by example and allow infants of 5 years or less, adults age 60 and older, pregnant women and people with chronic conditions to receive priority for immunization.

There is  no room for playing games and jumping the line,  or for hysteria. The health system, although a bit disorganized, has faced up  against the influenza season. In the coming days there will be more vaccines available to inoculate the rest of the population.

A lesson learned for all Panamanians: better safe than sorry.


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All night lines for flu vaccines

Posted on June 19, 2016 in Panama

Post Views: 74

THOUSANDS of people lined up at health centers  across the country  to receive vaccinations against the  H1N1 influenza virus which has already claimed the lives of 23 people.

People  in some regions like Chorrera arriving at 2 am  Sunday June 19,  were surprised to find a  line ahead of them which had been forming since 11.30 pm on  Saturday

At other  centers which had vaccines for 500 people ,  by  6.30 am Sunday lines appeared endless say media reports, and few of the people in line appeared to be  in the recommended  priority groups, children under 5 or adults over 60 years of age, orthose  suffering from chronic illness.

In  Ministry of Health centers in Mayor Diaz, San Isidro and Pueblo Nuevo, where children, youths and adults lined up National Police officers stood watching

Educational and health authorities have reiterated that classes have not been suspended following the epidemiological alert issued due to the increasing number of severe acute respiratory infections. With hundreds of people hospitalized.

Between Saturday and Sunday about 6,000 shots were applied in the vaccination centers in the Parque  Omar, district of San Francisco.

President Juan Carlos Varela said that on Monday June 20 another batch of 700,000 shots will arrive.  The vaccination  is recommended by the World Health Organization and acquired through the Vaccine Fund of the Pan American Health Organization, according to the Panama Government


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