2,000 a day given swine flu drugs
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UP to 2,000 antiviral drugs are being administered in the North East every day to people with swine flu symptoms, new figures released last night have shown.
And 55 people are currently being treated for the illness in hospitals throughout the region, none of whom are considered to be in a critical condition.
And yesterday, as the day Government launched its National Flu Pandemic Service, which can be accessed using the telephone and internet, the reality of the swine flu virus was laid bare.
Nationally there have been an estimated 100,000 new cases of swine flu reported in England since last week and 840 patients are in hospital with the virus, 63 of them in intensive care, the Department of Health said.
A special swine flu call centre in Newcastle run by Teleperformance is among those nationally set up to deal with the pandemic.
Government’s chief medical officer, Sir Liam Donaldson, said there were 26 confirmed deaths from the illness in England. Four people are known to have died with the virus in Scotland. Martin Wilson, director of NHS flu resilience in the North East said: "Over the past two weeks we have seen an increased number of people contacting the NHS with symptoms of swine flu in the region.
"To put things in perspective, we’ve been issuing an average of between 1,500 and 2,000 antivirals every day across the region during the past couple of weeks. We currently have 55 people in hospital across the region with swine flu symptoms, none of which are in critical care.