Swine flu moved a little closer to the Eastern Sierra today. Washoe County, Nevada, reported its first laboratory confirmed case. Reports said that a two year old girl was hospitalized in Reno at St. Mary’s Hospital with the flu. Tests later confirmed it was swine flu. Another member of her family may be coming down with it, according to reports. The child had been attending daycare, so authorities have concerns about that, too.
Meanwhile, the World Health Organization maintained the Pandemic Alert at Level 5 today. This indicates widespread infection and that a pandemic imminent, with the need to finalize organization plans.
Inyo-Mono Health Officer Dr. Rick Johnson said that because of California’s aggressive response actions, this level change would not have a significant impact on state or local activities. As we have reported, Johnson has talked with local medical officials and hospitals about a potential flu pandemic. He also spoke with schools officials about future possible restrictions if the flu worsens.
Dr. Johnson said that Mono County Health Department has set up a department operations center where staff meet daily with briefings, a game plan, and communication plan. Several states, including California, have declared a state of emergency.
Authorities want to stop calling this flu the swine flu since it does not involve pigs. So, they will call it H1N1 Influenza A. Not as snappy as swine flu. But, it’s H1N1 Influenza A.