Its rapid spread would dominate the proceedings of the North American Leaders’ Summit being held in the Mexican city of Guadalajara.
Health authorities and experts here have warned governments across the world that the new wave of swine flu could badly hit people in the poor and least-prepared parts of the globe.
“The virus is still around and ready to explode,” William Schaffner, an influenza expert at the Vanderbilt University School of Medicine who advises federal health officials, was quoted as saying by The Washington Post. “We’re potentially looking at a very big mess,” he said.
Officials of the Obama Administration said the North America Leader’s Summit would discuss the issue and their collective effort to tackle it. “We will focus on preparation for responding to the H1N1 and the North American flu season,” the National Security Advisor, General (retired) James Jones, told reporters while briefing them on the summit.
“Everybody recognises that H1N1 is going to be a challenge for all of us, and there are people who are going to be getting sick in the fall and die,” John O Brennan, the Deputy National Security Advisor said, adding that the issue presents a significant public health challenge to the US.