Swine flu continues to take its toll on human lives - 5 Aug 2009  
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As tallies continue to rise, at a pace experts now say is too fast to track, the official number of confirmed cases has climbed to 193,574 with 1,362 fatalities in more than 160 countries.

A 22-year-old South African student became the first person to perish from swine flu in sub-Saharan Africa, as India recorded her first swine flu fatality, and Israel her second.
In Canterbury, New Zealand, 20 percent of people surveyed reported flu symptoms, with half stating they had been either “quite” or “very” unwell.

The number of cases in the European Union grew by 67 overnight, with 29 of those cases in Portugal. People afflicted in Hong Kong increased by 206 overnight, reaching 4,272 total cases. British officials have reported 110,000 new swine flu infections in England during the last week of July. Meanwhile, Russia’s health agency is advising football fans not to attend the World Cup qualifying match in Wales, to protect from contracting the virus.

With the pandemic’s steep rise, hospitals have been full in the Australian state of Queensland. A swine flu patient on life support had to be flown 700 kilometers via helicopter to four separate hospitals before an open bed was found for him.
The state has begun canceling elective surgeries to cope with the high demand for beds in intensive care units.
We appreciate all government health officials' diligent efforts toward people's safety at this time.

Our prayers go to those who have lost loved ones to the hold of this pandemic, as well as those suffering from the illness. May global public health be ensured through humanity’s transition to life-affirming, plant-based fare.