Update on Influenza A(H1N1) Virus

This Influenza A (H1N1) Virus or swine flu is freaking me out. There are 64 new cases of infected persons and as of yesterday, the total of confirmed cases infected with the said virus is 311. What scares me is, there is a student of Our Lady of Perpetual Succor Marikina that is infected and we are just 8 kilometers away from Marikina.

Dr. Duque of the Department of Health said there is nothing to be panic about because there are available medicines for the swine flu but he once said that everything is under control but seems they can’t control the spread of the virus. It is spreading rapidly because of the rapid genetic mutation of the virus. Last June 11, 2009, the World Health Organization declared an H1N1 pandemic, moving the alert level to phase 6, marking the first global pandemic since 1968.

I always have alcohol and hand sanitizer in my bag whenever we go out and sanitize our hands after touching things. Yes, this is paranoia but you can’t blame us especially me. It is all over the news. I am a mother just trying to protect my daughter.


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Facts About A(H1N1) Virus

Classes in some schools started last Monday and before the students proceed to their designated rooms, they were taught on how to wash their hands properly. This is a joint campaign of the Department Of Health and Department Of Education to prevent the spread of A(H1N1) Virus or swine flu. The World Health Organization says the number of swine flu cases worldwide has reached 19,273. As of today, there are 33 confirmed cases of infected with the said virus in the Philippines, most of them came from USA including an Asian Development Bank executive and two Japanese students from Dela Salle University.

Teaching the children of washing their hands properly is not enough. They should be aware of what this swine flu is. The more we understand this virus, the more we can prevent its spread. Here are some facts about the A(H1N1) Virus. 

Swine flu is a respiratory disease of pigs caused by the type A influenza viruses. People do not normally get swine flu but human infections can and do happen. Cases of swine flu have most commonly occurred in people who have direct contact with infected swine and by person to person contact such as coughing or sneezing of infected person, also by touching your nose or mouth after touching something with the virus on it. The signs and symptoms are similar to the regular human influenza or flu like fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, body aches, headaches, chill and fatigue. People who are tested positive for the A(H1N1) virus are contagious as long as they have the symptoms of the illness. This is usually for a minimum of seven days following the onset of these symptoms.

To keep from getting the virus, avoid contact with people who maybe sick, get plenty of sleep, be physically active, drink lots of fluids, avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth, and wash your hands often. Avoid crowded places or if you can’t, wear mask.

If you are the one infected, cover your mouth with tissue when you cough or sneeze. Dispose the tissue properly after using it. Wash your hands with soap and water after you cough or sneeze. Alcohol-based hand cleansers are also effective. The virus can be treated and susceptible to antiviral medications that are available. The Department Of Health recommends ten days quarantine to keep from infecting others.


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