The country has reported more cases of flu caused by the H1N1 virus than any other except the United States and Mexico, The Times of London reported Saturday. British officials worry the country could run out of beds in hospital intensive-care wards if the disease continues to spread this winter.
The country has begun screening incoming passengers at Heathrow International Airport for symptoms of swine flu. At least 160 British citizens were in quarantine in China, Singapore, India and Egypt because of swine flu fears.
Pharmacies have been reporting a run on surgical masks and other supplies, CNN reported. One pharmacy said a six-month supply of masks was snapped up in three days.
“People are very panicked,” an assistant at Zafash Pharmacy in southwest London said. “That’s why everyone is running for thermometers, surgical masks and anti-bacterial gels.”