Mexico reported three new deaths from the swine flu epidemic Saturday and urged citizens not to let their guard down against a virus that has killed 19 in people in Mexico and is spreading across Asia and Europe.
Health Secretary Jose Angel Cordova said Mexico's confirmed swine flu cases jumped to 473, including the 19 deaths. The previous death toll in Mexico was 16. A Mexican toddler also died in Texas days ago, for a worldwide total of 20.
Mexico's last confirmed swine flu death occurred Wednesday, Cordova said. However, he said there were 11 cases of people suspected to have died from the virus in the last 24 hours. The alarming news came after the epidemic's toll in Mexico appeared to be leveling off.
Cases outside Mexico suggested the new swine flu strain is weaker than feared, but governments moved quickly anyway to ban flights and prepare quarantine plans. Experts warned the virus could mutate and come back with a vengeance.