|In April 2009, the novel H1N1 flu (referred to as “swine flu” early on) was first detected in people in the United States. This was a new virus that health officials knew very little about and the outbreak intensified rapidly in just a few weeks. Travel advisories were issued, schools closed, and a lot of information was released about the number of cases and rising death count.|
Over the past several months, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), World Health Organization (WHO), and local health officials have continued to monitor cases and study pandemic flu trends.
History, over the past century, has shown that a pandemic flu frequently returns a short time later with a higher number of cases and the potential to be more severe. Campaigns are currently running nationwide to educate parents, businesses and the community how to reduce your chance of getting sick and limiting the spread of the virus.
Register for a H1N1 Community Presentation
Scottsdale Fire Department is offering free presentations to help residents and businesses prepare for the H1N1 flu. Register here!
Flu Facts & Prevention
On June 11, 2009, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the first Pandemic in 41 years. This action was a reflection of the spread of the new H1N1 virus, not the severity of illness caused by the virus. Most people who have become ill have recovered without requiring medical treatment.
The symptoms of novel H1N1 flu virus in people are similar to the symptoms of seasonal flu and include fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, body aches, headache, chills and fatigue. A significant number of people who have been infected with this virus also have reported diarrhea and vomiting.
The novel H1N1 flu spreads from person-to-person, probably in much the same way that regular seasonal influenza viruses spread. However, because this is a new virus, most people will not have immunity to it, and illness may be more severe and widespread as a result.
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommends the following guidelines to help prevent the spread of germs:
- 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, especially after you cough or sneeze. Alcohol-based hand cleaners are also effective.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth. Germs spread this way.
- Try to avoid close contact with sick people.
- If you are sick with flu-like illness, CDC recommends that you stay home for at least 24 hours after your fever is gone, without the use of a fever-reducing medicine, except to get medical care or for other necessities. Keep away from others as much as possible to keep from making others sick.
Other important actions that you can take are:
- Be prepared in case you get sick and need to stay home for a week or so; a supply of over-the-counter medicines, alcohol-based hand rubs, tissues and other related items might could be useful and help avoid the need to make trips out in public while you are sick and contagious.
For more information, please visit the following Web sites:
Maricopa County Public Health– or 602-263-8856 (24-hour hotline)H1N1 Flu Resources for Businesses and Employers (CDC)
Vaccine information from the CDC