Swine flu most prevalent in children and young adults

There have been 53 confirmed cases of swine flu in the HSE west region. The area covers from Donegal down to Limerick and across to Tipperary. Eight four per cent of cases have presented in people less than 35 years of age.

Nine vaccination centres are to be established in the west region, a meeting of the Regional Health Forum west Hospital Committee were told on Tuesday, with the exact locations yet to be confirmed.

Front line health care workers will be vaccinated first followed by those with increased medical risks including pregnant women. Next up are children aged three to 18 years followed by providers of essential services. Then comes adults over 65 years, poultry workers, essential workers to the Government and selected industries before the rest of the population will be vaccinated.

Children and young adults are those who have been hardest hit by the H1N1 virus which has become a worldwide pandemic.

It is expected that up to half the population will be affected by the virus over the coming months.

Guidelines and leaflets have been made available to schools and information is available to employers on how to curb the spread of the virus in workplaces.

Symptoms of swine flu include a fever, cough, headache, weakness and fatigue, aching muscles and joints, sore throat and a runny nose.


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