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Monday, April 27, 2009

Non-Muslims Beware!

I was just joking with my wife the other day....If we find any Muslims with swine flu we might need to have a serious talk with him/her.

But the reality of the situation is that anyone can catch it because it is spread through human-human contact as well. Here's a little info:

What is influenza and the “swine” flu?
Influenza (“the flu”) is a virus that infects people every year throughout the world. The flu season in New York City typically runs from late fall through early spring; the flu season this year has been relatively mild.

Just like in humans, different types of influenza infect pigs and birds each year. Influenza infection in pigs is called the “swine flu” and in birds is called the “avian flu.” Swine flu and avian flu have rarely caused infection in people in the past – these infections are usually mild and don’t spread from one person to another.

What’s going on with swine flu now?
Over the past few days, public health authorities identified people in Mexico City infected by a type of swine flu that can be spread from one person to another. Although many deaths have been reported in the media, we don’t know for sure how many of these deaths are due to swine flu or to other causes of pneumonia. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) is conducting an investigation with Mexican authorities. In addition, a number of people with swine flu have been identified in several US states and New York City. All these infections have been mild and most have not needed hospitalization for treatment.

Is there “swine” flu in NYC?
Yes — on April 26th the Department of Health confirmed that a group of students in a school in Queens were infected with swine flu. Some of the students had travelled to Mexico and likely were infected there. All the students had mild illness and are reported to be recovering. The Health Department is actively investigating other clusters of illness, but no further swine flu cases have been identified in NYC thus far.

How is swine flu spread and how do I keep myself safe?
Both swine flu and the regular flu are spread from person to person through droplets released in the air when the infected person coughs. These droplets can only travel up to 3 feet from a person with influenza – so anyone within 3 feet of a patient with flu should wear a mask. Currently the CDC is recommending a N95 type mask for all persons providing direct patient care – but this recommendation may change to a surgical type mask (which is what is done for the regular flu) once more information is available. During circumstances that may create a lot of droplets in the air (intubation or bronchoscopy for example), the use of an N95 mask is always warranted.

What are the symptoms of swine flu?
The symptoms of swine flu in people are similar to the symptoms of regular human flu and include fever, cough, sore throat, body aches, headache, chills and fatigue. Some people have reported diarrhea and vomiting associated with swine flu. Like seasonal flu, swine flu may cause a worsening of underlying chronic medical conditions. If you develop symptoms like these, you may want to contact your health care provider, particularly if you are worried about them. Your health care provider will determine whether influenza testing or treatment is needed.

How do I keep my family and loved ones safe?
There is no vaccine available right now to protect against swine flu. There are everyday actions that can help prevent the spread of germs that cause respiratory illnesses like influenza. Everyone should take these everyday steps to protect their health:
  • Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water or alcohol-based hand cleansers
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth. Germs spread this way.
  • If you get sick with influenza, contact your health care provider and your supervisor. Employee Health Services may indicate when you can safely return to work.


amirah. said...

thanks for this info. definitely needed.

btw my blog is
you're going to have to change it on your blogroll.


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