(Des Moines) – The Iowa Dept. of Public Health (IDPH) is urging Iowans to educate themselves about the signs and symptoms of A/H1N1 influenza.
The A/H1N1 influenza virus appears to be spread from one person to another. A/H1N1 influenza viruses are not transmitted by food, and a person cannot get the virus from eating pork products.
As with seasonal influenza, Iowans are urged to help prevent the spread of A/H1N1 by taking the following precautions:
When you cough or sneeze, cover your nose and mouth with a tissue or your sleeve (if you do not have a tissue). Throw used tissues in a trash can.
After you cough or sneeze, wash your hands with soap and water, or use an alcohol-based hand gel.
If you are ill with a respiratory illness (coughing and sneezing), stay home from work or school so you don't make others sick.
Avoid close contact with others who are coughing or appear to be ill.
Symptoms of A/H1N1 influenza include fever (greater than 100 F), along with cough, sore throat, headache and body aches, and extreme tiredness. Some people have also reported diarrhea and vomiting associated with swine flu.
If you have any of these symptoms, contact your health care provider. If you have recently visited Mexico or areas in the U.S. where A/H1N1 influenza cases have been confirmed, and develop A/H1N1 flu symptoms within seven to ten days after your return, it's important to contact your health care provider to discuss your symptoms.
Students are encouraged to evaluate their symptoms carefully and consider a visit to their physician or Urgent Care Clinic before they visit the Emergency Department.