City Council holds swine flu hearing

THE BRONX - The City Council on Thursday held a hearing to gauge the city's response to the swine flu outbreak.

Joseph Bruno, commissioner of the city's Department of Emergency Management, testified that the outbreak has already cost the city $10 million. Health Commissioner Dr. Thomas Farley says the health department alone has spent $4 million.

The testimony comes on the heels of the World Health Organization declaring a swine flu pandemic, as infections climb to nearly 30,000 cases worldwide. There have been 15 swine flu-related deaths in the city so far, three of which were announced Wednesday.

United Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten testified at the hearing that the death of a Brooklyn student last week was related to swine flu.

Weingarten says the student, who attended Urban Assembly School for Criminal Justice, had underlying health issues. A representative from the Department of Education says the school will not be closed.

AP wire services were used in this report.

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