Two western swine flu sufferers returned from New York

An adult male and a child - the first swine flu cases in the west - recently returned from New York, it was confirmed this week.

The exact location of the sufferers in the region has not been revealed.

Dr Tony Holohan, chief medical officer of the Department of Health and Children, outlined on Tuesday that three additional cases of Influenza Type A had been confirmed bringing the total number of confirmed cases in Ireland to seven.

He stated that two of the patients, an adult male and child, are from the west of Ireland while the other patient is a female from the eastern region.

“All the patients have recently returned from New York and are aware of the confirmed test results. They are currently being treated at home and all necessary public health protection measures are being taken.”

The Department of Health says these new cases are not connected to the previous ones confirmed in Ireland.

“As I have being saying since the start, we have expected further cases so this does not come as a surprise,” said Dr Holohan. “Both the Department of Health and Children and the Health Service Executive have planned for this eventuality and continue preparations in anticipation of further cases.”

The symptoms of the condition are the same as those for ordinary flu but they probably will be sudden and may be severe, according to the HSE. They may include a temperature over 38 degrees Celsius and some of the following:- dry cough, headache, severe weakness and fatigue, aching muscles and joints, sore throat, runny nose and vomiting/diarrhoea. These can lead to complications some of which may be severe.

If you are ill or think you might be you are advised to stay at home, cover your mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing with a paper tissue if possible - the virus spreads when an infected person coughs or sneezes, wash your hands frequently with soap and water, avoid large crowds and wash hard surfaces, such as kitchen worktops, door handles, etc, with a normal household cleaner because the virus can live on these surfaces.

“We would ask that people who have visited an affected area and become ill with flu like symptoms make their initial contact with their GP by telephone and not present at a GP surgery or A&E unit,” advises the Department of Health.

For further information on how to stay healthy and stop the spread of infection log ontowww.dohc.ie or www.HSE.ie

 

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