Swine Flu Breaks Out in Wudi County, Shandong

October 21, 2009 Updated: December 4, 2009

A large H1N1 influenza outbreak involving more than a thousand people occurred in Wudi County, Bingzhou City of eastern China's Shandong Province.

According to a resident contacted by The Epoch Times, all of the schools in Wudi County are closed with no scheduled reopening. The First Middle School, where the first case was reported, is under police quarantine. No one is allowed to enter or leave the school. The news of this outbreak is being blocked by the authorities.

The source said the first case was confirmed the afternoon of Oct. 11 and spread to approximately 400 students with all running a fever. They were put into quarantine inside a building and were then diagnosed with Influenza H1N1 by the Shandong Province Health Department. This was also confirmed by an anonymous party at the Wudi County Agriculture Bank.

A person who works at a local gas station told The Epoch Times that more than a thousand people were infected and the hospitals were overwhelmed with patients. People are worried about getting a fever and many people wear masks in public. In addition, his employer sent out free masks and disinfectant.

This is the largest outbreak of H1N1 in Shandong Province. Experts from all levels of the health department system and government arrived in Wudi County on Oct. 15. The government warned local residents to avoid public places such as supermarkets that are crowded and poorly ventilated.

Another person revealed that the diagnosed patients were sent to Bingzhou Tuberculosis Hospital for quarantine. The hospital did not answer the reporter's questions when called.

The Wudi County Disease Control Center told a reporter that all of the infected students were inoculated and required to remain in the hospital for observation.

An officer at the Wudi County Health Department said there is no effective way to prevent the spread of germs other than following public health advisories. The officer said that students should be back to school next week.

Wudi County covers 1998 square kilometers and has a population of 43 million.