The alarm has been hit! WHO again increased the threat of H1N1 swine influenza outbreak to phase 5 (just a step away from a full PANDEMIC influenza!). Will there be a pandemic outbreak again? No one knows yet. We'll have to prepare for the worst to come yet hope for the best.
Some facts about the H1N1 swine influenza (I read from the WHO website and newspapers):
1. A newly emerged flu virus strain containing genetic elements from the pig, bird and human. This means the pig and the bird can be the vector to cause transmission of the infection. Human-human transmission has also been documented, raising the danger risk of this infection.
2. Symptoms caused by the infection are fever, lethargy, runny nose, cough, loss of appetite, sore throat, maybe vomiting and diarrhea.
3. No particular vaccine has been developed for H1N1 infection yet. However, 2 antiviral drugs - Relenza (GlaxoSmithKline) and Tamiflu (Roche AG) have been shown to work against the H1N1 swine flu strain.
3. It is safe to eat pork meat as the influenza virus does not transmit through food. Ensure that the meat is handled and cooked well. Temperature of 70ºC and above kills the H1N1 virus.
4. Since there is no vaccine to protect from the virus yet, all we can do is preventing the spread of germs which may cause influenza.
- Covering your nose and mouth with a disposable tissue or handkerchief when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the waste basket after you use it.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water or alcohol-based hand cleaners
, especially after you cough or sneeze.
- Try to avoid close contact with sick people. If you get sick with influenza, stay at home and limit contact with others to keep from infecting them.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth.
- Consult your nearest healthcare facility if you think you have any of the symptoms.
For more information and updates about the H1N1 swine influenza, you can visit:
(Sorry, I would like to put up the address as links but there's problem in generating the links. =p)
9 months ago