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A Swine Flu Pandemic Plan

Flu Information
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The swine flu (novel influenza H1N1) pandemic may be caused by the global outbreak of a novel human flu virus that can infect and sicken many people and also and may also be fatal. A number of flu pandemics have occurred throughout history. There were three in the twentieth century. The 1918 flu pandemic was the worst and killing an estimated 20-50 million people throughout the world.

Swine Flu Vaccine

The novel H1N1 flue vaccine is the main tool for preventing the spread of the virus and during a pandemic. The CDC (Center for Disease Control), recommends that everyone should receive the vaccine as soon as they are available. During a flu pandemic, health officials ask the public to limit contact with other people as much as is possible. This is to help slow down the spread of the virus and put fewer lives at risk. Most people who are suffering from swine flu can be treated adequately at home. During a pandemic, hospital beds are reserved for the most severely ill.

Stay at Home

If you have a fever, (a temperature of 100 degrees F or 37.8 degrees C), the CDC recommends that you remain at home for at least twenty four hours after your fever has subsided. During this time you should not go to work and refrain from shopping, socializing or traveling. If the pandemic becomes very severe then members of the sick person’s household should also stay at home to prevent spreading the virus. They may be infected though not yet showing symptoms. You are advised to make a plan for your household in case you are all required to stay home, such as making sure you have enough food, water and medications available.

School Closures

During a severe pandemic schools may close and children will have to remain at home. Other childcare facilities and after school activities may also be closed. If this happens you will be required to keep your children indoors and not permit them to play with other children. Make plans for how to care for your children if they should be required to stay at home from school for a long period.

Start A Pandemic Plan Now

• Make a list of all your contacts including family, friends, school and work.

• Prepare by ensuring you have enough food and water at home.

• Talk with your family and friends about what you will do if family members become sick.

• Think ahead about what medical or other service you may need and talk to providers.

• Practice healthy habits of washing hands regularly, coughing and sneezing into a tissue and avoid touching your face with your hands.

If you have any concerns about you and your family and swine flu, talk to your family physician.

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