No cases of swine flu reported in Washington, officials say
Whatcom County officials are responding to the swine flu outbreak that is now in the international spotlight. There have been no cases of swine flu confirmed in Washington State.
Whatcom County, the city of Bellingham, St. Joseph Hospital, WWU representatives of the medical community and the schools are reviewing the community pandemic flu plan (developed in 2006) and are laying the groundwork for implementing portions of the plan, should the need arise. Work on pandemic flu preparedness has been ongoing for two years now, and as a result our community is well-prepared to respond effectively and appropriately.
Officials are monitoring the developing situation and will provide information to the community as it becomes available.
Local public health officials say that since the swine flu, like any other flu is spread by those who are sick, it is important to use precautions such as covering your cough, washing hands frequently and staying home if they are ill. Anyone who is sick and has traveled to Mexico, or elsewhere in the U.S. where cases of swine flu have been confirmed, should contact their health care provider and inform the doctor of their travel history as well as their symptoms.
This is also an important time for families to review their preparedness plans.
Make sure you have supplies of food, drinking water and medication to last 72 hours, in case of emergency or extended illness. Businesses are also encouraged to review their business continuity plans to ensure they are prepared to continue operations if their workforce is reduced due to illness.
For the most up-to-date information about the recent swine flu outbreaks, individuals can visit the Center for Disease Control’s website, www.cdc.gov/swineflu.htm. Washington state information about Swine flu is available at www.doh.wa.gov/swineflu.