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A/H1N1 flu continues to spread in Latin America
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The death toll from the outbreak of influenza A/H1N1 has risen to 61 in Latin America, with 60 in Mexico and one in Costa Rica, as the flu continues to spread in the continent, according to news reaching on Wednesday.

On Wednesday Mexico's Health Minister Jose Angel Cordova confirmed two more deaths of influenza A/H1N1 in Mexico, raising the total number of deaths to 60.

Cordova told reporters on Wednesday morning that 56 patients who died from the disease were infected before April 23, when the Mexican government declared an alert and ordered the closure of all educational institutions.

Cordova said there are still two states that have not reported confirmed cases and 89 percent of Mexico's municipalities still do not have any confirmed cases.

In Costa Rica, eight cases of H1N1 flu, commonly known as swine flu, have so far been confirmed, including one death.

The Costa Rican Health Ministry on Wednesday reported two more suspected flu cases, raising the number of suspected cases to 846 in the country.

The Panamanian Health Ministry on Wednesday reported 39 confirmed cases of the A/H1N1 flu, including 20 males and 19 females.

The ministry said 25 patients are under 15 years old and 37 were in quarantine at home, while the other two had been taken to hospital.

Brazil's Health Ministry on Wednesday announced that the number of suspected flu cases in Brazil has reached 37, with five new suspected cases.

The number of confirmed H1N1 flu cases in Brazil remained at eight. Two patients caught the flu virus in Brazil, while the other six were infected during international trips.

Meanwhile, the Colombian Social Protection Ministry on Wednesday confirmed the seventh flu case in the country, a patient who arrived days ago from Mexico City.

Other Latin American countries also reported laboratory confirmed human cases of infection: four in El Salvador, and one each in Argentina, Guatemala and Cuba.

According to the latest WHO and governments' data, 34 countries have reported 6,258 confirmed cases, including 2,446 in Mexico, 3,352 in the United States and 389 in Canada.

(Xinhua News Agency May 14, 2009)

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