Page last updated at 15:54 GMT, Tuesday, 2 June 2009 16:54 UK

First UK swine flu critical case


Two new critical cases are being treated in hospital in Renfrewshire

A Scottish man is the first person in the UK to become critically ill wholly because of swine flu, it has emerged.

The 45-year old from Paisley is one of two new critical cases being treated in intensive care at the Royal Alexandra in Renfrewshire.

The other is a 38-year-old woman who has underlying health problems.

A 37-year-old man, also with underlying health problems, remains in a critical condition in a Glasgow hospital. There are now 65 swine flu cases in Scotland.

At a briefing on Tuesday, Scottish Health Secretary Nicola Sturgeon said 23 new confirmed cases of swine flu had been confirmed in Scotland in the past 24 hours.

Of the new cases, 14 are in or around the "Dunoon cluster" in the NHS Highland area.

Eleanor Bradfor
Eleanor Bradford
Scottish Health Correspondent

The reason for the initial media frenzy around Swine flu was because the situation in Mexico suggested this would be a deadly outbreak. Now we know swine flu, or 'influenza A H1N1', is actually a mild strain.

However any kind of flu has severe consequences for a small number of people. The likelihood is that it'll continue spreading, but the evidence so far suggests two-thirds of us will have resistance to it.

Those of us who do catch it will have nothing more than a severe cold. But if one third of the workforce get ill, that will have an impact on the economy and put severe strain on the NHS.

Six new cases were recorded in Greater Glasgow and Clyde, two in Ayrshire and Arran and one in Lothian. There were no new probable cases.

The two patients who are in a critical condition at the Royal Alexandra Hospital are not connected to each other - or other critical cases.

Ms Sturgeon said health officials were "still pursuing a containment strategy" but this could change.

"We're getting closer now to a situation where the containment strategy we have been pursuing up until now will evolve into something different," she said.

"We are now seeing sporadic cases in the community, with clusters taking place around them.

"Therefore the message to the public is to be vigilant and alert and, crucially, to follow key hygiene advice, which becomes even more important now."

Ms Sturgeon said there was no need for the "public to be unduly worried" as the "overwhelming majority of cases were experiencing mild symptoms".

Of the 65 confirmed cases of swine flu in Scotland four are in Ayrshire and Arran; six in Forth Valley; 20 are in Greater Glasgow and Clyde; 32 in Highland and three are in the Lothian health board area.

Elsewhere, there is one new probable case of swine flu in Greater Glasgow and Clyde and 30 new possible cases.

One of these, one is in Dumfries and Galloway; two are in Forth Valley; six are in Greater Glasgow and Clyde; 17 in Highland; three in Lothian and one in Tayside.

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