Bay Area health officials monitoring swine flu

No local cases reported, but officials remain on alert

Health officials across the Bay Area say they are actively monitoring the spread of swine flu in the U.S., though no cases have been reported locally.

Dr. Richard Besser, acting director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), said Monday that his agency has confirmed 40 cases of the respiratory disease in five U.S. states including California, with none of the cases producing serious illness.

The number of confirmed cases doubled after further testing revealed the additional cases in New York City. According to the CDC, swine flu cases have been confirmed in New York, California, Texas, Ohio and Kansas. Only one person has been hospitalized and all of those infected have since recovered. The CDC also confirmed several cases in Mexico.

The reported cases in California were mostly in San Diego County and Imperial County.

Besser said that late Monday, "out of an abundance of caution," the CDC will issue a travel advisory recommending avoiding nonessential travel to Mexico.

He said that "much is unknown" about how or where this strain of swine flu originated and that the agency was aggressively investigating the situation, in collaboration with international, state and local health officials.

Influenza, including swine flu, is spread mainly from person to person through coughing or sneezing, and health officials recommend frequent hand washing and covering one's mouth when coughing or sneezing.


Like this comment
Posted by Robin
a resident of Martens-Carmelita
on Apr 28, 2009 at 3:13 pm

"covering one's mouth" -- to clarify, that means coughing/sneezing either into a tissue that you then throw in the trash, or coughing/sneezing into your inner elbow, like onto your sleeve.

nothing yuckier than seeing people cough onto their hands!

also, their is tons of research to support that alcohol-based hand sanitizers (e.g., Purell) do indeed kill 99.99% of germs as claimed.

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