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A health expert says 10 to 20 per cent of the Australian population could catch swine flu before a vaccine is available.
There are now more than 60 confirmed swine flu cases across the country and Federal Health Minister Nicola Roxon has warned Australians to brace themselves for more.
But the Federal Government is urging people not to panic about the rapidly increasing number of confirmed cases.
Six schools have been closed to limit the spread of the virus; four in Victoria and two in South Australia.
Professor Raina MacIntyre of the University of New South Wales says it could be a matter of weeks before Australia is dealing with an epidemic.
GENEVA, Ill. (AP) — A 42-year-old Illinois man has died from complications of swine flu. Officials with the Kane County Health Department say the man died Thursday. Health officials say the victim had other medical problems. They say no further information will be released because of privacy concerns. The man is the third person to die in the state from the swine flu. The virus has sickened more than 13,000 people in 48 countries and been linked to more than a 100 deaths worldwide, with the majority of the fatalities in Mexico.
Kane County Health Department officials reported the death of a 42-year-old man from complications related to swine flu Thursday morning. It was the third recorded death related to the virus in Illinois in less than a week. The department would not provide any other identification about the man other than his status as a Kane County resident and the fact that he had underlying chronic medical conditions in addition to the swine flu virus.
CHICAGO (WBBM) - Though the swine flu virus appears to be milder than health officials originally feared, the emergency room at Chicago's Children's Memorial Hospital is still being flooded with families concerned about the new H1N1 flu strain.
"Last year at this time, about 160 kids a day were seen in the ER at Children's. Last week, the average was 261, the hospital said. Capacity is about 170," said hospital spokeswoman Julie Pesch.
The peak day was April 28, when 392 children were seen in the ER.
"Our ER department has just been slammed. We've had to add staff, supplies and make up for Medicaid losses," added Pesch.
The hospital has experienced a financial strain to the tune of nearly $400,000 in just a two week period.
State health officials urge people with mild flu-like symptoms to stay home and treat the virus the way they would a typical flu, or make an appointment with their primary care doctor -- rather than going to the emergency room.
Eton shuts as boy gets swine flu
Eton College had been due to re-open on Sunday after half-term
Public school Eton will close for a week after a pupil tested positive for swine flu, a school spokesman has said.
The Berkshire boys school, which was attended by Princes William and Harry, was informed on Wednesday that a 13-year-old boy had tested positive.
Health authorities advised the school to shut until 7 June.
It comes after health officials announced a further 17 people in the UK were diagnosed with the virus, taking the total number of cases to 203.
Fourteen of the new cases - 13 children and one adult - are part of an outbreak now totalling 64 cases linked to Welford Primary School in Birmingham.
Welford is carrying out a "deep clean" while closed for half-term.
Two adults in London and a child in east England make up the other new cases of the H1N1 virus, reports the Health Protection Agency (HPA).
The London cases involve one returning traveller and one linked to a previously confirmed case.
Eton College, near Windsor, is currently closed for half-term and had been due to re-open on Sunday 31 May, but will now remain closed for another week.
A school spokesman said the boy had a mild illness and was recovering at home.
It's a balance between minimising the risk of a spread on the one hand - which is the national interest - with this all-important time for boys
Andrew Wynn, Eton bursar
The school's bursar, Andrew Wynn, told the BBC News website the decision to keep the school closed had, in effect, been taken by the Health Protection Agency (HPA).
"The school is hardly likely to ignore the strong advice of the HPA. We have had long discussions all day with them," he said.
"Clearly they are wanting to stop the spread of it."
Boys taking public examinations are being allowed to return to do so under controlled conditions.
"One of the things we have agreed is that boys be allowed back to take their exams," said Mr Wynn.
"So it's a balance between minimising the risk of a spread on the one hand - which is the national interest - with this all-important time for boys."
He said it was too soon to have had any reaction from parents.
Worldwide there have been 95 deaths reported from swine flu and an estimated 13,450 cases.
Eton College was founded by King Henry VI nearly 570 years ago. It has 18 British prime ministers, including the Duke of Wellington, Horace Walpole and Harold MacMillan, among its former pupils.