The Spanish Health Minister Trinidad Jimenez confirmed on Tuesday the second case of swine flu as well as another 32 people suspected of having the disease.

The minister said that the patient is a young male from Valencia who had recently travelled to Mexico, as part of a study abroad program. The other patient is from Albacete and was also on a study abroad program in Mexico.

Both patients are responding well to the treatment, according to Jimenez.

Cases of suspected swin flu in Spain

Spain Swine Flu Map

World Health Organisation raises pandemic alert

The Director of the WHO has raised the pandemic alert from phase 3 to 4. Phase 4 is characterized by verified human-to-human transmission of an animal or human-animal influenza reassortant virus able to cause “community-level outbreaks.” The ability to cause sustained disease outbreaks in a community marks a significant upwards shift in the risk for a pandemic. Any country that suspects or has verified such an event should urgently consult with WHO so that the situation can be jointly assessed and a decision made by the affected country if implementation of a rapid pandemic containment operation is warranted. Phase 4 indicates a significant increase in risk of a pandemic but does not necessarily mean that a pandemic is a forgone conclusion.