The latest update from the Ministry of Health says that three more batches have been received from the ESR laboratory in Wellington, confirming 34 positive of a total of 64 specimens sent. The recent batches of laboratory confirmed cases continue the trend of sustained local transmissions, with the majority having had no history of travel or close contact with overseas travellers.
The Ministry of Health and National Health Service are no longer taking random samples of patients from the special flu clinics and from the borders.
The Ministry is now reserving laboratory confirmation testing for specific groups as warranted for further investigation.
This includes at risk groups such as inpatients, pregnant mothers, and investigation of certain cluster outbreaks such as school hostels.
So far one confirmed death from the H1N1 virus. She was a 22 year old female who died last Thursday after being admitted ten days earlier with severe complications of H1N1. Laboratory swabs done whilst she was admitted have confirmed positive for H1N1. She was 33 weeks pregnant and her baby was delivered by caesarean and is alive and well.
Two other deaths last week are suspected to be H1N1 associated and the Ministry is awaiting laboratory confirmation.