For Immediate Release: May 6, 2009
Media Contact: Communication Office
Vermont Department of Health
BURLINGTON – The Vermont Department of Health today announced the state's first probable case of influenza A (H1N1), the new strain of human influenza virus that is responsible for an international outbreak of H1N1, or swine flu.
A clinical sample from an Orleans County adult has been sent on from the Vermont Department of Health Laboratory to the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta for confirmation.
The individual, who was not hospitalized, has been contacted by the Health Department and is recovering well. The individual did not travel internationally during the time of possible exposure, but did travel out of state to an area that has confirmed cases.
“This is not a surprise, we have been expecting to see cases here,” said Health Commissioner Wendy Davis, MD. “We are continuing to ask everyone to take the same common-sense precautions to stop illness from spreading: cover your cough, wash your hands, stay home when you're sick, call your doctor if you need medical attention.”
Vermont has a surveillance system in place to detect and track the possible spread of influenza within the state and throughout the region. The Health Department is working closely with regional and national partners as well as health care providers and hospitals in-state to monitor any outbreaks and take action to help reduce its spread.
Vermonters are urged to continue to take the following precautions to avoid spreading illness:
- Cover your mouth and nose every time you cough or sneeze.
- Use a tissue when possible and throw it in the trash after use.
- Wash your hands often and well. (Wash for as long as it takes to sing the "ABC" song.)
- If you're sick, stay home from work or school, for at least 7 days, even if symptoms go away.
“This is also a good time for every individual, family, business and organization to stay alert to the changing situation — and to make or refine plans about what you will do if you or the people you depend on need to stay home for a time,” said Dr. Davis.
Extensive information about H1N1 swine flu or other health concerns is available at the Health Department's website: www.healthvermont.gov or dial 2-1-1.
For a copy of the Vermont Emergency Management Family Preparedness Workbook, which provides commonsense advice on preparing your family for a more widespread outbreak of flu, call 800-347-0488 or visit: www.vemvt.com.