Minister warns of World Cup swine flu ‘nightmare’

Swine flu will be one of the Health Department’s “biggest nightmares” during the 2010 Soccer World Cup, Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi said in the National Assembly on Monday.

“One of our biggest nightmares is the fact that 2010 is going to be held in June when there is a possibility of another bout of H1N1,” Motsoaledi said during a debate on President Jacob Zuma’s State of the Nation speech.

“Many people will be together in South Africa … This is going to be a challenge to us.”

Motsoaledi said the department had 1,3-million doses of H1N1 vaccines and had been given another 3,5-million by the World Health Organisation (WHO).

“We are going to be vaccinating all who are selected, starting with pregnant women, people at entry points, people who are involved in sport administration.”

The donation of vaccines from WHO has saved South Africa about R250-million, Motsoaledi said. — Sapa

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