A continent that has battled deadly viruses such as the H5N1 bird flu and SARS in recent years, has been taking steps to ward off the new swine flu virus.
Swine flu has killed 103 people in Mexico. There are 20 cases in the United States and six in Canada, and possible cases as far afield as Europe, Israel and New Zealand.
Following are some details of how Asian countries are responding to the crisis and how markets are reacting:
Asian stocks fell about 2 percent as the outbreak of swine flu in North America hurt shares of airlines while prompting some market players to trim risky positions, hitting currencies such as the Australian dollar. [nSP433715]
- New Zealand teacher who had led school group in Mexico is treated in hospital with flu-like symptoms. Ten students from same group are confirmed as having Influenza A, treated as likely swine flu sufferers. Results of tests expected Tuesday.
- Initial tests on another school group, also just back from Mexico, show 3 students with signs of Influenza A.
- Government strengthens border surveillance as a precaution against swine flu.
- Two suspected cases test negative. They had caused jitters in the foreign-exchange market, causing the local currency to pull-back from offshore highs, analysts said.
- All planes from the United States to be sterilized after landing (there are no direct flights from Mexico).
- Temperature checks for all passengers, a procedure that has been in place since the SARS scare in 2003.
- China, which came in for criticism after initially covering up the SARS outbreak in 2003, promises to be open when it comes to swine flu.
- South Korea advises citizens to avoid travel to three regions in Mexico, including Mexico City.
- Shares in providers of chicken, beef and fish products and major pharmaceutical firms gain.
- Scans temperatures and looks for signs of respiratory infections from people arriving from U.S., Canada and Mexico.
- Health official says people should take precautions similar to those in 2003 when Asia battled SARS: wear face masks and report to authorities fever and coughing whose cause is unknown.
SINGAPORE - Scanners measure temperature of passengers from U.S. just before they undergo immigration checks.
- Health ministry says members of public are advised to postpone or avoid non-essential travel to Mexico.
- Hong Kong steps up port health protection measures, and sets up temperature screening machines at all checkpoints.
- Media reports that Hong Kong authorities have 20 million doses of Tamiflu and other anti-flu medication.
- Special cabinet meeting held.
- Monitoring at airports via thermal cameras to find people with fever; health officials to board planes arriving from Mexico to check passengers, including using portable thermal sensors.
- Health Minister says will prioritize producing new vaccines, even if that means temporarily halting production of seasonal, winter ones.
- Temperature screening checkpoints at Suvarnabhumi Airport; no direct flights from Mexico.
- Health officials say have sufficient stockpile of anti-influenza drugs to handle outbreak.
- Raises warning level on travel to Mexico and strengthens quarantine inspection on travelers from Mexico and the United States.
- Travelers, particularly those coming from the countries already hit by the recent outbreak, to be screened.
- Surveillance and other measures stepped up at entry points. Thermal scanning of all arriving passengers from countries with reported swine flu cases.
- Govt says sufficient face masks and Tamiflu
- Temperature scanners installed at 10 airports and ports with immediate effect
- Indonesia will stop all pork imports immediately.
- New Delhi's airport on alert to look for passengers arriving with flu-like symptoms.