There have been four confirmed human cases of the swine flu in San Diego County and two cases in Imperial County, yet, per San Bernardino Health Officer Dr. Maxwell Ohikhuare, “No cases of this virus have been identified in San Bernardino County at this time.” Of the aforementioned six individuals with swine flu, all of them (ages seven to 54) have recovered. San Bernardino County’s Public Health Department is conducting enhanced surveillance of health care providers, and the department’s Emergency Operation Center has been activated to more closely monitor developments. The swine influenza is a common respiratory disease of pigs and though occasional human infections with swine flu do occur, it is usually in persons with direct exposure to pigs. The County notes that the current situation suggests that human-to-human transmission may be occurring, though adds that humans cannot get the infection from eating pork or any products made with pork. As there is no vaccine for swine flu, Dr. Ohikhuare recommends these precautions: cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze, then dispose of tissue; wash hands with soap and water, or an alcohol-based hand cleaner, often; avoid close contact with sick people and, if sick, stay home from work or school; and avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth, as this is how germs are spread. Those who develop an illness with fever and respiratory symptoms, such as cough and runny nose, and other possible symptoms, such as body aches, nausea, vomiting or diarrhea, should contact their health care provider; these medical professionals will decide if influenza testing is needed. For more information, you can visit the website of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, at CDC.gov/swineflu.
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