RIYADH – A book on swine flu, aimed at educating the general public, as well as teachers and healthcare workers about the dangers of the H1N1 virus, was released at a ceremony in Riyadh, Wednesday.
Dr. Abdulazeez Kunju, a public health expert working with the Ministry of Health, wrote the book entitled “Novel H1N1 Influenza (Swine Flu)”.
The 50-page book is in English and is claimed to be the first of its kind published in the Kingdom. It is divided into eight chapters.
It contains updated information on the disease. “Since the H1N1 virus that causes swine flu is new, people are afraid to get the vaccination recently introduced in the Kingdom. The common man’s fear is simply because of ignorance about this new virus,” he said.
The book is aimed at educating schoolteachers, clinicians and doctors, said Dr. Kunju, who is also the author of books on malaria, dengue fever, chikungunya (similar to dengue fever and also spread by mosquitoes) and other communicable diseases.
There are chapters defining influenza, references to influenza pandemics dating back to 1976, the swine flu situation in the Middle East and Saudi Arabia, the H1N1 virus and modes of transmission, signs and symptoms of swine flu, diagnosis, treatment as recommended by World Health Organization (WHO) and chemophylaxis. The book also contains information on pregnant and lactating women, who are at a high risk of contracting swine flu, he said.
He said there is a detailed discussion on the prophylactic of swine flu as recommended by the WHO. The book has updated information on swine flu as of Nov. 23, he said.
Dr. K. Masalamani, a laser scientist at King Saud University in Riyadh, released the book at the ceremony attended by doctors and other members of society.
The publishing of the book is part of the charity work of the Safa-Makkah Polyclinic. “About 5,000 copies have been printed for distribution among those people who don’t have access to the Internet,” he said. – SG