Five more flu cases identified
As of last reports, Governor Bobby Jindal announced that state officials are now investigating four new suspected cases of H1N1 flu (swine flu) in Lafayette Parish and one new case in Ascension Parish,
bringing the total number of suspected cases currently under investigation in Louisiana to 21.
Samples of the five new suspected cases tested positive for type A Influenza, which could indicate either seasonal or the H1N1 (swine flu) virus. These are not yet confirmed cases, meaning they were unable to be sub-typed as the H1N1 virus by the Office of Public Health laboratory in New Orleans. The H1N1 virus subtype is confirmed by U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) lab tests.
Specimens for all probable cases have been sent to the CDC lab in Atlanta for confirmation.
There are seven confirmed cases of the virus in Louisiana, five in Lafayette Parish and one each in Ascension and Orleans parishes.
The four new suspected cases in Lafayette Parish involve students who attend Lafayette schools that have already been closed: two children are from Our Lady of Fatima and one is from St. Pius and another from Cathedral Carmel. The new Ascension Parish case is an adult.
The state lab has received 968 specimens since the presence of the novel H1N1 virus was first announced. In total, 415 specimens have been tested.
State officials continue to monitor the situation regarding the suspected H1N1 cases in Louisiana and are taking important precautions in order to prevent the further spread of illness.
SUSPECTED H1N1 CASES: Lafayette Parish - 16 (up from 12 yesterday); Ascension Parish - 1 (none suspected as of yesterday); Orleans - 1; Beauregard - 1; St. Landry - 1; Iberia Parish - 1.
CDC-CONFIRMED H1N1 CASES: Lafayette Parish - 5; Orleans - 1; Ascension - 1.
CDC-NEGATIVE H1N1 CASES: St. Martin - 1; St. Tammany - 1; 211 Line Active.
The state has activated the 211 statewide information and referral phone network to help people throughout the state get information on the H1N1 virus, how it is affecting their area and how they can take measures to prevent the spread of illness. Operators are being updated as the state reports additional information on the virus.
Protecting Your Family: Make sure you:
- Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze.
- Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water, especially after you cough or sneeze. Alcohol-based hand cleaners are also effective.
- Avoid close contact with sick people.
- If you get sick with influenza, CDC recommends that you stay home from work or school and limit contact with others to keep from infecting them. Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth. Germs spread this way.
Symptoms of the H1N1 virus (swine flu) include:
- Fever, cough, sore throat, body aches, headache, chills and fatigue.
- If you are experiencing these symptoms - Consult your doctor as soon as possible.
Visit www.FluLa.com for the latest information on the H1N1 virus.