BEIJING: China's Ministry of Health warned Monday that people in the western regions were in more danger of A(H1N1) influenza compared to their eastern counterparts due to inadequate medical resources.
According to the ministry, the only two fatal cases to date in the Chinese mainland were reported in west China's Tibet and Qinghai.
The west is under-resourced in terms of health personnel, medical supplies and expertise. Besides, it's located in high altitude areas, which adds up difficulties to the treatment of patients infected with respiratory diseases, said Health Minister Chen Zhu at a meeting on flu prevention and control especially for the western regions.
Chen said the ministry will help improve the ability of flu prevention and control in the regions, including training local medical staff and supplying vaccines and medicines.
He also stressed the importance of building an emergency response team which take immediate actions when severe cases occur, so as to prevent fatal cases.
As of October 16, the Chinese mainland has reported 26,348 cases of A(H1N1) flu, including 23 severe cases and two fatal ones.