H1N1 (referred to as "swine flu" early on) is a new influenza virus causing illness in people. This new virus was first detected in people in the United States in April 2009. This virus is spreading from person-to-person worldwide, probably in much the same way that regular seasonal influenza viruses spread.
Tips on preventing the H1N1 influenza
- Wash your hands often with soap and warm water, or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
- Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you sneeze, cough, or blow your nose. Quickly throw away used tissues, then wash your hands.
If you don't have a tissue, cough or sneeze into your sleeve/elbow-not into your hands.
- Clean and disinfect surfaces in your home that are touched often like light switches, doorknobs, faucets, and appliance handles.
- Don't share food, utensils, or beverages with others. Don't share things like towels, lipstick, toys, cigarettes, or anything else that might be contaminated with germs.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth. Germs can spread this way.
Avoid close contact with sick people. Most germs are spread when a sick person coughs, sneezes, or talks.
- If you get sick, stay home from work or school and limit contact with others to keep from infecting them. Stay home until at least 24 hours after you are free of a fever (100 degrees F or 37.8 degrees C), or signs of fever without use of fever-reducing meds.
- Wear a mask in a medical office, if asked.
- Always follow your doctor's instructions and take your medicine as prescribed.
Please refer to our flu prevention and hand hygiene pages for more information.