Thailand's Swine Flu Death Toll Doubles — Thailand's swine flu death toll nearly doubled over the past week with 44 people now dead from the disease, the government said Wednesday.<सपन क्लास="फुल्ल्पोस्त">

The Public Health Ministry last reported 24 swine flu-related fatalities a week ago.

"The rise in the number of deaths were due a fast spread of the disease, delayed medical treatment, and an increase in the cases of severe respiratory infection," said the ministry's Deputy Permanent Secretary Paijit Warachit.

A quarantine officer monitors Liverpool fans walking through a temperature screening at a checkpoint outside the Rajamangala national stadium in Bangkok on July 22. (Photo: Reuters)
"We have now told medical workers to give the anti-viral medicine as soon as the tests return positive to reduce the number of cases of delayed treatment," Paijit said.

The number of people infected with swine flu jumped to 6,776 from 4,517. Thirty-five people infected remained hospitalized with seven in critical condition.

The ministry urged those with flu symptoms to stay away from public places and seek medical attention if they persist after two days, or immediately if they have prior medical conditions.

Hundreds of schools in Bangkok were closed temporarily for cleaning and disinfection.

Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva acknowledged Wednesday that the disease has spread quickly but said the government has taken all necessary measures to fight the virus.

Abhisit last week said the spread of swine flu will likely continue through at least 2010.

The World Health Organization on Tuesday said the worldwide death toll from swine flu has doubled in the past month, reaching more than 700 since the start of the outbreak.