What is H1N1 flu?
The following definition is from the New York State Department of Health website: Swine Influenza, also called swine flu, is a res
piratory disease of pigs caused by type A influenza viruses. Outbreaks of swine flu happen regularly in pigs. People do not normally get swine flu, but human infections can and do happen. Most commonly, human cases of swine flu happen in people who are around pigs but it's possible for swine flu viruses to spread from person to person also.
How do I protect myself from getting H1N1 Flu?*
You can protect yourself by:
- Washing your hands often with soap and warm water. Alcohol-based hand cleansers may also effective when soap and water is not available.
- Avoiding people who are ill.
- Staying home from work or school if you are sick. Wait 24 hours after there are no longer signs of a fever (without the use of fever-reducing medications) before returning to school or work.
- Using tissues when you cough or sneeze, and disposing of the tissue in a covered trash bin.
- Keeping hands away from your face. Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth.
- Cleaning shared space more often such as phone receivers, keyboards, steering wheels and office equipment.
- Refraining from sharing personal items such as forks, spoons, toothbrushes and towels.
*This information is from the NYS Department of Health website.Clean Hands Save Lives!*
Keeping hands clean is one of the most important steps we can take to avoid getting sick and spreading germs to others. It is best to wash your hands with soap and clean running water for 20 seconds. However, if soap and clean water are not available, use an alcohol-based product to clean your hands. Alcohol-based hand rubs significantly reduce the number of germs on skin and are fast acting.
When washing hands with soap and water:
- Wet your hands with clean running water and apply soap. Use warm water if it is available.
- Rub hands together to make a lather and scrub all surfaces.
- Continue rubbing hands for 20 seconds. Need a timer? Imagine singing "Happy Birthday" twice through to a friend!
- Rinse hands well under running water
- Dry your hands using a paper towel or air dryer. If possible, use your paper towel to turn off the faucet
Remember: If soap and water are not available, use alcohol-based gel to clean hands. When using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer:Additional Resources:
- Apply product to the palm of one hand
- Rub hands together
- Rub the product over all surfaces of hands and fingers until hands are dry.
When should you wash your hands?
*From the Centers for Disease Control and PreventionWorld Health Organization (WHO) - Current Global Alert and Response information about the H1H1 flu, frequently asked questions, briefing notes, situation updates from around the world and more.Centers for Disease Control and Prevention - Questions and Answers about Swine FluPandemic Flu Information -One-stop access to U.S. Government swine, avian and pandemic flu information
- Before preparing or eating food
- After going to the bathroom
- After changing diapers or cleaning up a child who has gone to the bathroom
- Before and after tending to someone who is sick
- After blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing
- After handling an animal or animal waste
- After handling garbage
- Before and after treating a cut or wound