H1N1 Flu Information for the Public
What is H1N1 Influenza? H1N1 flu (2009 H1N1 Influenza virus) 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, in much the same way that regular seasonal influenza viruses spread. Most people who have become ill with this new virus have recovered without requiring medical treatment. Flu viruses are spread mainly from person to person through coughing or sneezing by people with influenza. Sometimes people may become infected by touching something (such as a surface or object) with flu viruses on it and then touching their mouth or nose.
Symptoms: The symptoms of H1N1 flu virus in people are similar to the symptoms of seasonal flu and include fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, body aches, headache, chills and fatigue. A significant number of people who have been infected with this virus also have reported diarrhea and vomiting. H1N1 Flu self-evaluation tool. Also, like seasonal flu, severe illnesses and death has occurred as a result of illness associated with this virus. Recommendations are available if you are caring for someone sick at home.
What can I do to protect myself and others from getting sick?
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 hand cleaners are also effective.
Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth. Germs spread this way.
Try to avoid close contact with sick people.
Stay home if you are sick until you have been free of fever for at least 24 hours. This is to keep from infecting others and spreading the virus further.
Get Vaccinated: H1N1 Flu Vaccine is arriving in increasing amounts, so now all Californians are encouraged to seek the H1N1 flu vaccine. Please visit our Vaccine Information and Vaccination Locations pages for information and locations where you can get vaccinated. Remember to get your seasonal flu shot this year. The seasonal flu vaccine does not protect against H1N1 flu, but it will help to prevent sickness and the spread of germs that cause respiratory illnesses like influenza.
Take these everyday steps to protect your health:
Note: For travel information see Travelers and Travel Industries.
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People at High Risk For Complications