Trinity College of Florida's Response to H1N1

 

Overview:

H1N1 (swine) influenza has made rapid progress globally since its recognition in April, 2009. The 2009 influenza pandemic has spread internationally with unprecedented speed. In past pandemics, influenza viruses have needed more than six months to spread as widely as the new H1N1 virus has spread in less than six weeks. On June 11, 2009 the World Health Organization raised the pandemic alert to level 6 indicating a global pandemic.
The following information is designed to provide students, faculty, and staff information on the Center for Disease Control’s information on H1N1 (swine) influenza.

 

Symptoms & Treatment

 

Symptoms:

H1N1 flu symptoms often begin abruptly and mimic seasonal influenza:
• Fever, usually 100.4 or higher
• Severe body aches
• Cough and/or sore throat
• Fatigue
• Headache
• Vomiting and diarrhea are possible (more common in children than adults)

Treatment:

When you are sick with influenza like illness:
• See your physician
• Rest
• Stay home and avoid contact with other people except to get medical care or for other necessities.
• Fluids (water, tea, sports drinks, etc.)
• Cover your nose and mouth with a fresh tissue or your sleeve when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it. DO NOT RE-USE TISSUES
• Fever reducers (Tylenol® (acetaminophen) or Advil® (ibuprofen) or Aleve®(naproxen) only)
• Possibly an anti-viral medication such as Relenza® or Tamiflu® started in the first 48 hours of illness.
Your health care provider can assess whether you are in a high risk group warranting the use of anti-virals. Individuals exhibiting influenza like symptoms are strongly urged to stay at home until they have been free of fever for 24 hours. Your fever should be gone without the use of a fever reducing medication.

Signs of Complications: In adults, emergency warning signs that need urgent medical attention include:
• Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath
• Pain or pressure in the chest or abdomen
• Sudden dizziness that does not pass
• Confusion
• Severe or persistent vomiting
• Flu-like symptoms improve but then return with fever and worse cough

Prevention Tips:
Trinity College of Florida encourages good health habits to prevent the spreading of flu. The most effective methods of prevention include:
• Stay informed. This website and the sites listed below will be updated regularly as information becomes available.
• Influenza is thought to be spread mainly person to person through the coughing or sneezing of infected people.
• Take everyday actions to stay healthy.
 • Cover your nose and mouth with a fresh tissue or your sleeve when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it. DO NOT RE-USE TISSUES.
 • Wash your hands often with soap and water, especially after you cough or sneeze.
 • Alcohol-based hand sanitizers are also effective. Pay special attention to hand washing before approaching food preparation or consumption.
 • Do not share food, eating utensils, drinks, straws, toothbrushes or cigarettes.
 • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth. Germs spread that way.
 • Stay home if you get sick and remain home for at least 24 hours after your temperature has returned to normal. The CDC recommends that you stay home from work or school and limit contact with others to keep from infecting them.
• Follow public health advice regarding school closures, avoiding crowds and other social distancing measures.
• Find healthy ways to deal with stress and anxiety.
• 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 sanitizers, tissues and other related items might be useful and help avoid the need to make trips out in public while you are sick and contagious.

For more details on important habits to prevent spreading germs visit the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). These tips are especially important for students as they often experience a reduction in sleep and an increase in stress which may cause some compromise to their immune systems.

Cover your nose with a tissue when you sneeze or cough. Visit www.cdc.gov/h1n1 for more information.



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