Elective surgery cut in fight against virus

PANAMA’S Children’s hospital (Hospital Del Nino) has suspended  elective surgery and health centers have extended hours to cope with an increase in cases of children affected by a respiratory virus.

The symptoms are coughing, a poor appetite, mucus in the nose, fever and shortness of breath.

The virus has been found mainly in infants, and health officials said any children with these symptoms should seek immediate care.

National Health Director Itza Barahona de Mosca asked people to take precautions such as frequent hand washing to prevent the spread of the illness.

Authorities have extended the hours at health centers in Tocumen, Santa Ana, Nuevo Arraiján and Capira to deal with the increase in cases.