Page last updated at 11:04 GMT, Tuesday, 28 April 2009 12:04 UK

Swine flu test centre is set up

The H1N1
Health experts say this strain of virus has been around for 30 years

A 24-hour facility has been set up in Leicester to test for possible swine flu cases in the East Midlands.

Swabs will be analysed at the Leicester Royal Infirmary with results potentially available in four hours.

The Health Protection Agency (HPA) has said "some" people are being tested for the H1N1 virus in the East Midlands, including two in Derbyshire.

Dr Roy Fey, from the HPA, said the two had been told to stay at home but stressed there was no need to panic.

Dr Fey said: "We're doing tests. A lot of people have come back from Mexico over the Easter holidays and around the country. There have been calls to our different health protection units - that is how the people in Scotland were detected.

"We are not taking people into hospital unless they need hospital care - we are taking swabs from them to see if they have the virus or not.

"Outside of Mexico all of the cases have seen people fall mildly ill, almost like seasonal flu, the H1N1 virus is something that has been around for 30-odd years."

People are being told not to panic

Dr Phillip Monk from the HPA said people with symptoms should seek medical advice.

"The most important thing is to contact your general practitioner, the second thing is isolate yourself - don't spread anything you've got around other people. You will be told by your general practitioner and by us what to do next."

The UK's first swine flu cases have been confirmed as honeymooners Iain and Dawn Askham, of Polmont, near Falkirk.

The World Health Organisation has raised its alert level to four - two steps short of declaring a pandemic.

Level four means the virus is showing a sustained ability to pass from human to human, and is able to cause community-level outbreaks.



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