Health officials and Lexington Mayor Jim Newberry announced Friday that the Kentucky Department for Public Health (DPH) will report Kentucky's second probable case of H1N1 (swine flu), involving a Fayette County man, to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
"Although we have not identified many probable or confirmed cases to date, we remain concerned about how widespread H1N1 might become," said William Hacker, M.D., commissioner of DPH. "At this time, we continue to recommend that individuals stay aware of new developments related to swine flu and focus on practicing good health habits.”
Lexington-Fayette County Health Department Commissioner of Health Melinda Rowe, M.D. reports that the new probable case in Fayette County involves a man with a history of recent travel to another state by car. The man has not been hospitalized. Health officials from the Lexington-Fayette County Health Department are investigating the case, and will evaluate close contacts for illness and possible preventive treatment.
Thursday, DPH reported Kentucky’s first cases of swine flu, a confirmed case involving a Warren County woman who is hospitalized in Georgia and a probable case involving an infant in the Barren River Health District. Results from CDC on the sample for the infant are not yet available.
Kentucky health officials continue to ask that Kentuckians who have traveled recently to Mexico or other countries or communities within the U.S. where the new H1N1 influenza strain known as swine flu has been reported, or who are planning such travel, be alert for the symptoms of swine flu in the following ways:
- Monitor yourself and travel companions for symptoms of fever, chills, headache, sore throat, cough, body aches, and vomiting or diarrhea.
- If symptoms of illness develop within seven days of travel return, seek evaluation by a health care provider as soon as possible.
- Be sure to tell your health care provider about your recent travel and suggest testing for influenza.
- Stay home from work, school and other public places until you are feeling well.
People who have been in close contact with a person who has been diagnosed with swine flu or who reside in communities where there are one or more confirmed swine flu cases should also be alert for these symptoms.
"Like the rest of the nation, Kentucky is taking every precaution in responding to this new strain of H1N1," said Gov. Beshear. "Health officials are working to detect all possible cases of swine flu and respond with the appropriate preventive measures. Individuals should continue to monitor this situation as it develops and practice basic measures to stay healthy, such as hand washing and staying home when sick."
Common sense precautions to prevent illness include: avoiding close contact with those who are ill; staying home when sick; covering the mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing; avoiding touching the eyes, nose or mouth; and frequent hand washing.
Currently, there are more than 141 confirmed cases of swine flu reported in the U.S., a number that is expected to continue to grow. The World Health Organization and CDC have reported numerous human cases of a severe respiratory illness in at least three different regions of Mexico. The number of cases has risen steadily during April 2009. Laboratory testing of patient specimens has confirmed infections with swine influenza ("swine flu") A/H1N1 virus. This is a newly emerging, animal-origin virus that is now being spread from an infected person to another person.
For more information on swine flu, visit: http://cdc.gov/swineflu. Individuals can also visit http://healthalerts.ky.gov for information on swine flu and Kentucky, or follow KYHealthAlerts on Twitter to be notified when new information is posted at the Web site.