More than 4,000 educational institutions in Japan have been shut as a result of swine flu, new reports state.
The number of schools closed represents nearly eight per cent of the total number of schools in the country, Bloomberg reports.
A total of 4,464 schools, ranging from kindergartens to tertiary institutions, have now been shut as a result of swine flu.
Gregory Hartl, spokesperson for the World Health Organisation, told Bloomberg a close eye is being kept on the spread of the disease in Japan.
There have now been more than 250 confirmed cases of swine flu in the country, with infections concentrated in the western prefectures.
Most of those affected were young people aged between ten and 19.
The latest case was confirmed as a 16-year-old student in Tokyo
who tested positive for the H1N1 virus after returning from a trip to New York.
She is believed to be recovering well in Hachioji.
Written by Mark Smith
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As usual, Japan is leading the way in preventing the spread of infectious disease.
As with other potential pandemic outbursts over the years such as SARS, Japan has been pro-active and perhaps over-reactive in order to prevent the spread of Swine Flu and in this case has shut down schools throughout the country. It is worth remembering that there are only 250 cases of Swine Flu in the whole of the nation that has a population of approximately 127 million - a smaller percentage of cases than the UK.
With this official reaction to the "crisis" I am confident that the government will have complete control over the spread of the disease making it possibly one of the safest countries to visit in the world.