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Cablegate: H1n1 Update: 29,907 Confirmed Cases; 4 New H1n1

VZCZCXRO7582
RR RUEHAG RUEHAST RUEHDF RUEHDH RUEHHM RUEHLN RUEHLZ RUEHMA RUEHPB
RUEHPOD RUEHSL RUEHTM RUEHTRO
DE RUEHRL #1389/01 3071449
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 031449Z NOV 09
FM AMEMBASSY BERLIN
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 5667
INFO RUEHZN/ENVIRONMENT SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY COLLECTIVE
RUCNFRG/FRG COLLECTIVE
RUEHFT/AMCONSUL FRANKFURT 8315
RUEHRC/DEPT OF AGRICULTURE USD FAS WASHINGTON DC 0186
RUEAUSA/DEPT OF HHS WASHINGTON DC
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 0872
RUEHGV/USMISSION GENEVA 1569

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 BERLIN 001389

SIPDIS

STATE FOR EUR/CE PETER SCHROEDER
STATE FOR OES/IHB
STATE FOR AID/GH/HIDN
USDA PASS TO APHIS
HHS PASS TO CDC
HHS FOR OGHA

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: TBIO KFLU ECON PREL SOCI CASC GM
SUBJECT: H1N1 Update: 29,907 Confirmed Cases; 4 New H1N1
Deaths Reported in Week

REF: Berlin 1304 and previous

1. (U) SUMMARY: From October 21-29, the number of confirmed
H1N1 infections in Germany rose by 3,075 to a total of 29,907
cases. Four more H1N1 deaths have been reported for a total of
6 deaths in Germany. In an October 26 meeting, the Vice
President of the Robert Koch Institute stated that we are at
the beginning of a second wave of infection, which will
continue as the flu season progresses. Following an October
28 Pandemic Influenza Working Group meeting, Mission Germany
remains at tripwire two, which indicates clusters of infection
with only localized human-to-human transmission. END SUMMARY

2. (U) On November 2, the National Reference Center for
Influenza at the Robert Koch Institute confirmed a total of
3,075 new (laboratory and non-laboratory) H1N1 cases in
Germany over the period October 21-29, increasing the total
number of H1N1 cases to 29,907. Bavaria (bordering the Czech
Republic and Austria) is now the German state with the highest
number of confirmed virus cases with a total of 7,477,
followed by Nordrhein-Westfalen (6,991) and Baden-Wuerttemberg
(4,192).


Four Deaths Reported
--------------------

3. (U) Four additional H1N1 deaths have been reported since
October 23. A 65-year old man from Mannheim (Baden-
Wuerttemberg) died on October 23. He was considered to be a
"risk patient" and had multiple underlying health conditions.
Three deaths occurred on October 30. A five year old boy
suffering from pneumonia died in Neuenkirchen (Saarland). A
16-year old severely-disabled patient died in Augsburg
(Bavaria). A 48-year old woman with asthma and liver disease
died in Bonn (Nordrhein-Westfalen). This brings the total
number of H1N1 deaths in Germany to six.


RKI VP Predicts Start of Second Wave of Infection
--------------------------------------------- ----

4. (U) In an October 26 meeting, the Vice President of the
Robert Koch Institute told us that he expects a rapid increase
in H1N1 infections as the flu season continues through
January. He attributed Germany's remarkably few H1N1 deaths
to its aggressive program of early detection, treatment and
isolation of patients. He was also clearly frustrated about
the local controversy over the decision to use different H1N1
vaccines for certain German government officials/the German
military and the German public, blaming an incompetent
procurement strategy and a bad communication plan for this
needless distraction. He stressed that the local vaccine is
safe.


Pandemic Influenza Working Group Meeting
----------------------------------------

5. (U) A core group of Mission Germany's Pandemic Influenza
Working Group (PIWG) met on October 28 to review the current
H1N1 situation in Germany. Mission Germany remains at
tripwire two, which indicates clusters of infection with only
localized human-to-human transmission. All sections continue
to implement the Department's recommended preparations for a
potential increase in cases this fall. The Health Unit hopes
to receive H1N1 vaccine from Washington in late November or
December. The Consular Section has printed and is posting
signs in German and English to encourage sick customers to
stay home. These same signs will be soon be posted at all
visitor entrances adjacent to local guard screening areas.
The Management Section confirmed that additional FOBs are
available. These would allow more Mission Staff to work from
home if infections increase as predicted, but will only be
distributed with clearance from the EAC.


BERLIN 00001389 002 OF 002


DELAWIE

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