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Flu scare at Ghana school

One of Ghana's top private schools has been forced to shut down temporarily after 16 students were diagnosed with H1N1 influenza or “swine flu.”


All of the cases at the Lincoln Community School “are being successfully treated at home,” according to a Nov. 24 statement issued by the U.S. embassy in Accra.


The Ghana Health Service directed the school to close for 10 days to “break the transmission cycle of the virus within the school and to prevent the possible spread of the virus to the broader community,” the embassy said in a warden message to U.S. citizens.


The pre-K-through-12 school is popular among wealthy Ghanaians and expatriates who work at embassies and NGOs in the capital. About 600 students attend. The annual cost is more than $15,000.


Deaths from the virus are approaching 8,000 worldwide, including 1,000 in the past week, the World Health Organization said on Friday. Ghana has 40 confirmed cases but no deaths. The WHO recently announced that it is providing 200 million doses of H1N1 vaccine to African countries.