The World Health Organization said it was moving up a meeting to Monday to decide whether to raise the level of the UN agency's pandemic alert from its current level of 3 out of 6. The current situation constitutes a public health emergency of international concern. However, more information is needed before a decision could be made concerning the appropriateness of the current alert level.
No cases of swine flu have been reported in Washington state, health officials said today. State epidemiologist Tony Marfin said the state is stepping up its disease surveillance at clinics, hospitals and other testing sites to see whether the strain of virus associated with about 86 deaths in Mexico has reached Washington state.
Health officials say they have located what might be Michigan's first case of swine flu. The state Department of Community Health said Monday the "probable" case involves a 34-year-old woman in Livingston County.
Medical authorities in Ontario are investigating a number of cases of suspected swine flu that spread to at least two other Canadian provinces, the United States and Europe. Over the weekend, Canadian health officials confirmed six "relatively mild" cases of human swine influenza in British Columbia and Nova Scotia, but also warned more cases are likely in the near future. Four cases were confirmed on the eastern coast in Nova Scotia and two others in British Columbia. Health authorities said they were ready to address the potential spread of the swine flu outbreak and had a stockpile of 50 million vaccine doses, which would be sufficient to serve Canada's population of 33 million people.
Spain's Health Ministry confirmed the Europe's first human case of swine flu on Monday and another 17 sick people are suspected of having the virus.
In New Zealand, Health Minister Tony Ryall said two students and a parent among a group of 15 that had just come back from a class trip to Mexico had mild flu and were being tested for swine flu. On Sunday, New Zealand officials said nine students and one teacher from a separate group that also were in Mexico "likely" have swine flu.
Everyday actions to stay healthy.
Influenza is thought to spread mainly person-to-person through coughing or sneezing of infected people.
Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth. Germs spread that way.
Try to avoid close contact with sick people.
Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it.
Wash your hands often with soap and water, especially after you cough or sneeze. Alcohol-based hands cleaners are also effective.
If you get sick, CDC recommends that you stay home from work or school and limit contact with others to keep from infecting them.