Thursday, September 6, 2012

Fair, Swine and Staying Healthy.

With the Wayne County Fair just two days away, information about swine influenza is a timely topic.

Earlier today the Wayne County Health Department posted the following advisory on their facebook page...

"To date all cases reported cases had exposure to swine.
There has been no evidence of human-to-human transmission.
Ohio Department of Health and the Centers for Disease Control have not determined or confirmed person-to-person transmission at this time, but continue to monitor this.
The majority of H3N2v cases were in the southwestern part of Ohio.
Ohio Department of Health is reporting a decrease in reported H3N2v cases.
The Wayne County Health Department and the Wayne County Fair Board continue to work proactively regarding H3N2v."
The Centers For Disease Control offers the following information on the topic.
 Pigs can be infected with their own influenza viruses (called swine influenza) that are usually different from human flu viruses. While rare, influenza can spread from pigs to people and from people to pigs. When people get swine flu viruses, it’s usually after contact with pigs. This has happened in different settings, including fairs. Right now, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is concerned about a new flu virus that has been found in U.S. pigs and that has infected people too. This virus – called H3N2v – may spread more easily from pigs to humans than is usual for swine flu viruses.

CDC Recommendations For People with High Risk Factors:

  • Anyone who is at high risk of serious flu complications planning to attend a fair where pigs will be present should avoid pigs and swine barns at the fair this year.

  • People who are at high risk of serious flu complications include children younger than 5 years, people 65 years and older, pregnant women, and people with certain long-term health conditions (like asthma and other lung disease, diabetes, heart disease, weakened immune systems, and neurological or neurodevelopmental conditions).

CDC Recommendations for People Not at High Risk:

  • Don’t take food or drink into pig areas; don’t eat, drink or put anything in your mouth in pig areas.

  • Don’t take toys, pacifiers, cups, baby bottles, strollers, or similar items into pig areas.

  • Avoid close contact with pigs that look or act ill.

  • Take protective measures if you must come in contact with pigs that are known or suspected to be sick. This includes minimizing contact with pigs and wearing personal protective equipment like protective clothing and gloves and masks that cover your mouth and nose when contact is required.

  • Wash your hands often with soap and running water before and after exposure to pigs. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand rub.

  • To further reduce the risk of infection, minimize contact with pigs and swine barns.

  • Watch your pig (if you have one) for illness. Call a veterinarian if you suspect illness.

  • Avoid contact with pigs if you have flu-like symptoms. Wait 7 days after your illness started or until you have been without fever for 24 hours without the use of fever-reducing medications, whichever is longer. If you must have contact with pigs while you are sick, take the protective actions listed above.
People with high risk factors who have pig exposure, including having attended a fair where pigs are present, and develop flu symptoms, should call a health care provider. Tell them about your exposure and your high risk factor. Seasonal flu vaccine will not protect against H3N2v, but prescription influenza antiviral drugs can treat H3N2v illness in people.

For more information: Telephone: 1-800-CDC-INFO (232-4636)/TTY: 1-888-232-63548 Email: Web: August 22,