Gonzaga and SRHD Seasonal Flu and H1N1 Updates

February 22, 2010

The Gonzaga University Nursing Department has provided the following information to help answer questions about H1N1. To access pdf file, click on the link below.

Gonzaga Nursing Department H1N1 Brochure

February 17, 2010

The H1N1 vaccine is still available at the Gonzaga University Health Center. For more information or to schedule an appointment please call  the Health Center at (509) 313-4066. There is no charge for the vaccine. All persons considering vaccination are encouraged to consult their regular medical provider with questions or concerns.

February 1, 2010

Back by popular demand. There will be an H1N1 vaccination clinic held in Crosby Student Center tomorrow, February 2, 2010 from 9 am until 1 pm.  There will also be vaccine available on Wednesday February 3, 2010 in Catherine Monica from 7 pm until 9 pm. There is no charge for the vaccine.  You can find information about the H1N1 vaccine on the Gonzaga Health Center webpage: www.gonzaga.edu/healthcenter .  All persons considering vaccination are encouraged to consult their regular medical provider with questions or concerns.

January 26, 2010

The final H1N1 vaccination clinic on campus will be held today, Tuesday January 26, 2010, at Crosby Student Center from noon til 3 pm.  There is no charge for the vaccine.  You can find information about the H1N1 vaccine on the Gonzaga Health Center webpage: www.gonzaga.edu/healthcenter .  All persons considering vaccination are encouraged to consult their regular medical provider with questions or concerns.

January, 16, 2010

The Gonzaga University Health Center will be offering H1N1 vaccine to all interested persons on Tuesday January 19 from 3 - 6 pm and Wednesday January 20 from 3 - 6 pm on the Gonzaga University campus.   The vaccination clinics will be held in the Huetter Mansion at 503 E. Sharp (corner of E. Sharp and N. Addison).  The vaccine is free.  There is limited parking availability for the Huetter Mansion and carpooling is encouraged.

Both the injection and nasal spray forms of the vaccine will be available.  The injection form of the vaccine is available to all individuals.  Pregnant women are strongly encouraged to consult their obstetrician for guidance.  The nasal spray form of the vaccine is a live attenuated vaccine. It does not contain thimerosal or other preservatives. This form of the vaccine is available to healthy individuals aged two years and up without a weakened immune system or any underlying health issues.  Women who are pregnant or possibly pregnant are not eligible for this form of the vaccine.  You can read the Vaccine Information Sheet for each type by clicking here: 

All persons considering vaccination are encouraged to consult their regular medical provider with questions or concerns about the vaccine. 

January 4, 2010

The Gonzaga University Health Center will be offering H1N1 vaccine to all students, faculty, staff and family members this week, January 4 -8, 2010.  The vaccine is available by appointment only by calling 313-4066.  The vaccine is free of charge.

Both the injection and nasal spray forms of the vaccine will be available.  The injection form of the vaccine is available to all individuals.  Pregnant women are strongly encouraged to consult their obstetrician for guidance.  The nasal spray form of the vaccine is a live attenuated vaccine. It does not contain thimerosal or other preservatives. This form of the vaccine is available to healthy individuals aged two years to 49 years without a weakened immune system or any underlying health issues.  Women who are pregnant or possibly pregnant are not eligible for this form of the vaccine.  You can read the Vaccine Information Sheet for each type by clicking here:
 
All persons considering vaccination are encouraged to consult their regular medical provider with questions or concerns about the vaccine. 

December 9, 2009
 
Gonzaga University will offer six H1N1 vaccination clinics before the end of the fall term, open to students, faculty, staff and family members.  This is an open call to all individuals who wish to be vaccinated.  There is no charge for the vaccine.
 
The Centers for Disease Control is encouraging individuals at higher risk to be vaccinated:
* Pregnant women
* Individuals who live with or have daily contact with children under six months of age
* Individuals with weakened immune systems due to underlying health conditions
* All people six months through 24 years of age
* Healthcare workers and emergency medical service personnel
 
All vaccine clinics are walk-in, first-come, first-served and appointments are not taken.  The H1N1 vaccination clinics will be offered at the following times:
 
Thursday December 10
3 pm - 6 pm
Huetter Mansion on Sharp
 
Friday December 11
9 am - 11 am and 1 pm - 4 pm
GU Health Center, corner Sharp and Dakota
 
Tuesday December 15
3 pm - 6 pm
Huetter Mansion on Sharp
 
Wednesday December 16
9 am - 11 am and 1 pm - 4 pm
GU Health Center, corner of Sharp and Dakota
 
Thursday December 17
9 am - 11 am and 1 pm - 4 pm
GU Health Center, corner of Sharp and Dakota
 
Friday December 18
9 am - 11 am and 1 pm - 4 pm
GU Health Center, corner of Sharp and Dakota
 
Both the injection and nasal spray forms of the vaccine will be available.  The injection form of the vaccine is available to all individuals.  Pregnant women are strongly encouraged to consult their obstetrician for guidance.  The nasal spray form of the vaccine is a live attenuated vaccine. It does not contain thimerosal or other preservatives. This form of the vaccine is available to healthy individuals aged two years to 49 years without a weakened immune system or any underlying health issues.  Women who are pregnant or possibly pregnant are not eligible for this form of the vaccine.  You can read the Vaccine Information Sheet for each type by clicking here:

All persons considering vaccination are encouraged to consult their regular medical provider with questions or concerns about the vaccine. 

December 2, 2009

Gonzaga University will offer four H1N1 vaccination clinics this week, open to students, faculty, staff and family members.  There is no charge for the vaccine. 

As noted in previous messages the following priority groups have been established for receiving the H1N1 vaccine:

  • Pregnant women
  • Individuals who live with or have daily contact with children under six months of age
  • Individuals with weakened immune systems due to underlying health conditions
  • All people six months through 24 years of age
  • Healthcare workers and emergency medical service personnel

The H1N1 vaccination clinics will be offered at the following times:

Wednesday December 2
3 pm - 6 pm
Huetter Mansion on Sharp

Thursday December 3
3 pm - 6 pm
Huetter Mansion on Sharp

Friday December 4
8 am - Noon
GU Health Center, corner of Sharp and Dakota
(please note there is limited staff for this clinic so wait times may be longer)

Friday December 4
1 pm - 4 pm
Huetter Mansion on Sharp

Both the injection and nasal spray forms of the vaccine will be available.  The injection form of the vaccine is available to all individuals.  Pregnant women are strongly encouraged to consult their obstetrician for guidance.  The nasal spray form of the vaccine is a live attenuated vaccine. It does not contain thimerosal or other preservatives. This form of the vaccine is available to healthy individuals aged two years to 49 years without a weakened immune system or any underlying health issues.  Women who are pregnant or possibly pregnant are not eligible for this form of the vaccine.  You can read the Vaccine Information Sheet for each type by clicking here:

All persons considering vaccination are encouraged to consult their regular medical provider with questions or concerns about the vaccine.

November 24, 2009

Gonzaga has been receiving H1N1 vaccine shipments each week for the last several weeks.  Delivery of the vaccine is expected to continue.  Vaccination clinics are planned for the week after Thanksgiving break (November 30 through December 4) but the schedule has not yet been determined.  Please watch this Update page for current information.  Students, faculty and staff members will receive email notification in advance of each vaccination clinic.  It is anticipated that we will be able to offer both the injection and nasal spray form of the vaccine during next week's vaccination clinics.  You can read the Vaccine Information Sheet for each type by clicking here:

If you have questions or concerns about the vaccine you should consult your regular medical provider.

Reported student cases of flu-like illness at Gonzaga have decreased in recent weeks.  For the week of November 16 through November 20 four cases were reported to the campus Health Center.  The total number of cases of flu and flu-like illness reported to the Health Center in November is 35.  366 cases were reported in October and 275 were reported in late August/September.  The total number of cases of flu and flu-like illness reported since August 28 is 676.

November 21, 2009

Gonzaga University has received another allotment of H1N1 vaccine. The vaccine is in the form of an injection. This form of the vaccine is available to all individuals.  Pregnant women are strongly encouraged to consult their obstetrician for guidance.   You should read the Vaccine Information Sheet for this form of the H1N1 vaccine at: http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/hcp/vis/vis-statements/flu.html .  All persons considering vaccination are encouraged to consult their regular medical provider with concerns.  There is no charge for this vaccine.

Distribution of this supply of vaccine will occur Saturday November 21 from 8 am until 4 pm at the Huetter Mansion on Sharp.  Please note that this vaccination opportunity is limited to Gonzaga students, faculty and staff only.  Family members who are not students, faculty or staff are not eligible at this time.

Individuals in the previously identified priority groups (pregnant women, those who live with or have daily contact with children under six months of age, and those with weakened immune systems due to underlying health conditions) will be given priority.  The vaccination clinic may close before 4 pm if all the vaccine is distributed.

November 12, 2009

Gonzaga University has received another allotment of H1N1 vaccine. A limited amount was sent to the University in this shipment. The vaccine is in the form of nasal spray. The nasal spray vaccine is a live attenuated vaccine. It does not contain thimerosal or other preservatives. This form of the vaccine is available to healthy individuals younger than 49 years without a weakened immune system or any underlying health issues.  Women who are pregnant or possibly pregnant are not eligible for this form of the vaccine. Questions about the vaccine and further information on health restrictions is available by sending an email message to H1N1vaccine@gonzaga.edu . You may also wish to consult your regular medical provider.

Distribution of this limited supply will occur Friday November 13, from 8 am to 1 pm at the Huetter Mansion on Sharp. Please note that this round of vaccinations is limited to Gonzaga University faculty, staff and students only. Family members who are not faculty, staff or students are not eligible for this round of vaccinations.

This vaccination clinic will be held in two sessions. Distribution of the vaccine will be based on the first letter of your last name:

  • Those with last names beginning A - L should arrive between 8 am and 10:30 am.
  • Those with last names beginning M - Z should arrive between 10:30 am and 1 pm.

If you arrive for a session not matching the first letter of your last name you may be asked to return for another session. The available vaccine will be divided equally between the two sessions. Distribution is first-come, first-served. Reservations or appointments will not be scheduled for these two sessions.

November 6, 2009

Gonzaga University has received its first allotment of H1N1 vaccine.  A very limited amount was sent to the University in this shipment.  The vaccine is in the form of a flu shot, not nasal spray.  Distribution of this limited supply will occur Tuesday November 10, from 11 am to 1 pm and 3 pm to 4:30 pm at the Huetter Mansion on Sharp.  Please note that this round of vaccinations is limited to Gonzaga University faculty, staff and students only.

Using Spokane Regional Health District (SRHD) and Centers for Disease Control (CDC) guidelines, priority groups have been established for this limited allotment.  The priority groups are:

  • Pregnant women (the vaccine provided to Gonzaga contains thimerosal, a preservative. Pregnant women are strongly encouraged to contact their obstetrician for guidance)
  • Individuals who have children under six months of age in the household

If you fall into one of these categories you are eligible to participate in this round of vaccinations. We anticipate receiving more vaccine soon which will be devoted to wider distribution. If you do not fall into one of these groups we ask you to please wait to receive H1N1 vaccine from Gonzaga.

The vaccine will be distributed through a reservation system. Individuals who are in the priority groups listed above who wish to receive the vaccine must submit a request via email to H1N1vaccine@gonzaga.edu. Please include the following information in your message:

  • Name
  • Priority group to which you belong
  • Morning or afternoon preference
  • Contact phone number

A representative of the vaccination team will contact you to advise you of the date and time of your appointment.  Please remember that submitting a request does not guarantee a reservation or vaccination.  As noted above, our initial supply is very limited and it will be distributed on a first-come, first-served basis.

Tuesday November 3, 2009 

Yesterday the Spokane Regional Health District reported two confirmed cases of Influenza B in the community.  This is seen as an indicator the traditional flu season is upon us.  Be vigilant and stay healthy!  Practice good health habits.  See previous updates for more detailed information. 

During the week of October 26-30 the Health Center reported 27 cases of Influenza-like-illness.  366 students have been triaged (in person or by phone) in October for flu symptoms.  This number represents both confirmed cases of flu A and unconfirmed cases of flu symptoms.  The total since the start of the fall term is 641 students.

There is no new information related to H1N1 vaccine availability.  If you have the opportunity to receive the H1N1 vaccine through another provider in the community (or your hometown) you may want to consider taking that option.  Although we still anticipate receiving H1N1 vaccine on campus we do not know when this will occur.  As previously reported, the Health Center has run out of seasonal flu (not H1N1) vaccine for the season.  If you have not yet received seasonal flu vaccine and you have the opportunity to receive it through another provide you may want to consider taking that option.  The Health Center does not anticipate receiving any additional seasonal flu (not H1N1) vaccine.

Monday October 26, 2009

During the week of October 20-24 the Health Center reported 62 cases of Influenza-like-illness.  339 students have been triaged (in person or by phone) in October for flu symptoms.  This number represents both confirmed cases of flu A and unconfirmed cases of flu symptoms.  The total since the start of the fall term is 614 students.

There is no new information related to H1N1 vaccine availability.

Tuesday October 20, 2009

As of Tuesday October 20, 2009, the student health center was holding steady with a consistent number of cases of Influenza-like-illness.  288 students have been triaged (in person or by phone) in October for flu symptoms.  This number represents both confirmed cases of flu A and unconfirmed cases of flu symptoms.  The total since the start of the fall term is 563 students.

Effective Wednesday 10/14/09 the Health Center stopped testing most cases of Influenza-like-illness seen by Health Center providers to confirm the presence of Influenza A or B.  The volume of patients is becoming significant enough that widespread testing with the "rapid" test is not feasible.  The rapid test will be administered at the providers' discretion in selected cases.  Since all Influenza-like-illnesses (confirmed or otherwise) are treated essentially in the same manner this will not impact delivery of Health Center services to our students.  The numbers of Influenza-like-illnesses and persons triaged by phone will still continue to give us an indication of flu activity among students.

H1N1 Vaccine Update:

The Spokane Regional Health District has advised that H1N1 vaccine shipments are slower and smaller than expected due to production delays.  Gonzaga University has applied to be a Point-Of-Distribution (POD) for H1N1 vaccine and our communication with SRHD has been consistent and encouraging.  If H1N1 vaccine is allocated for distribution to Gonzaga campus community members it will not occur until at least November.  Please watch this space for further updates.

As of Monday October 13, 2009, the student health center had its busiest day yet for confirmed cases of Influenza A.   9 cases were confirmed bringing the combined total for this semester to 56 confirmed cases.  In addition, 362 students have been triaged with flu-like illness.  We are now officially in the cold and flu season, so it is important that we all remember the precautions that keep us healthy.

October 6, 2009

As of Monday October 5, 2009 the Gonzaga University Health Center reported the following student flu activity since the beginning of the fall semester on August 28:

  • 37 confirmed cases of Influenza A (H1N1 is a strain of Influenza A)
  • 297 cases of flu-like symptoms that were not confirmed as influenza

These numbers are staying steady.  Our highest day for confirmed cases occurred at the end of September with 5 confirmed Influenza A cases reported in one day.

Students, staff and faculty are reminded to continue the precautions previously recommended (see information and links below).  Stop the flu before it gets to you!

VACCINE UPDATE

The federal government has announced that the first doses of H1N1 vaccine will be available very soon.  These initial doses are earmarked for the highest priority groups.  The priority groups identified by health authorities are (in this order):

  • Pregnant women
  • Household contacts of children under six months of age
  • Healthcare and emergency medical services workers
  • Children and young people aged six months through 24 years
  • People between 25 and 64 years who have chronic medical conditions

As more vaccine becomes available it will be offered to members of all priority groups and the general public not within one of these groups.  However, if there is a significant shortage of vaccine health authorities may limit the availability to particular priority groups.  At this time there is no indication that a significant shortage of vaccine will occur.

Gonzaga University has applied to the State of Washington and Spokane Regional Health District to be a Point Of Distribution (POD) for the H1N1 vaccine.  We have not received official approval to be a POD.  If we are designated as a POD the vaccine will be offered on campus for students, staff and faculty, based on priority groups and vaccine availability.  The vaccine may be offered either as a nasal spray or an injection.  The University hopes to have more POD information within a few weeks.  Please watch this update page for the most current information.

September 17, 2009

As of 4pm on September 17th, one new confirmed case of Influenza A was reported by the Health Center on 9/17, bringing the total to nine for the fall semester.  An additional two students reported flu-like symptoms (but not confirmed as Influenza A), bringing that total to 156 for the fall semester.  At this point many of those students have recuperated and are back at their studies and busy college lives.

Below you will find documents describing the work processes of the Health Center and Housing and Residence Life office related to handling cases of the flu and flu-like symptoms.  These flow charts are intended to convey a general picture of how these two departments deal with students experiencing the flu and flu-like symptoms.

September 15, 2009

The Gonzaga community appears ot be staying steady with confirmed cases of Influenza A and cases of reported flu-like symptoms.  As of Monday 9/14/09 at 4 pm one new case of Influenza A was confirmed for a total of eight cases.  There have been approximately 130 cases of flu-like symptoms reported to the Health Center so far this semester.  Although this is encouraging news, we need to stay vigilant and consistent in our prevention efforts.

The traditional cold and flu season is about to descend upon us.  Symptoms of both illnesses can be similar.  The common cold is an upper respiratory infection and can be caused by many different types of viruses.  The common cold is contagious and lasts seven to 14 days.  The flu is a highly contagious viral infection.  The flu affects the lung and sinuses.  A person with Influenza can be contagious for about one week after symptoms appear.

September 10, 2009

The Gonzaga Health Center reports 6 confirmed flu A cases.  In addition, 85 students have visited or called the Health Center with flu-like symptoms.  (As of 9/9/09)

September 1, 2009

Confirmed case of influenza A on campus

Gonzaga University began a new academic year on Friday August 28 with the opening of our residence halls.  From Friday August 28 through Sunday August 30 more than 2500 students moved into on-campus residence halls, apartments and houses.    As classes begin this week, they will be joined on campus by nearly 2500 additional non-residential students.  This level of intensive close-contact by a large number of individuals is typical for any school year, but we are especially vigilant this year as the H1N1 flu situation develops.  Colleges and universities all across the country are reporting suspected or confirmed H1N1 cases on their campuses.  Gonzaga University has had its first confirmed case of influenza A today.  The Health Center staff is working with this individual for appropriate response to limit the spread of the illness.

The Gonzaga Health Center, following guidance from the Spokane Regional Health District (SRHD) and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) will continue to use the approach of treating seasonal flu as if it is H1N1, and treating H1N1 as if it is the seasonal flu.  Consistent with SRHD and CDC guidance, the Health Center also continues to emphasize prevention as the best defense against seasonal flu and H1N1.  If you are experiencing flu-like symptoms you should avoid contact with others.  In addition, basic precautions should be followed, such as cover your cough and sneeze, wash hands often and use hand sanitizer, and wipe down commonly touched surfaces such as desktops, computer keyboards and doorknobs.  More detailed information is available at the websites listed at the end of this message.

Getting the vaccine for the seasonal flu is recommended to reinforce a person's general health and immunity.  Since Friday August 28 more than 300 Gonzaga students received a seasonal flu shot at the Health Center, 200 of those during first-year Orientation.

The University administration is engaged in on-going development of a flu plan specific to the current H1N1 situation.  Critical functions in all areas are monitored for readiness and response.  External guidance from health agencies (SRHD and CDC) as well as experience and best practices at other colleges and universities is being observed.  Specific attention is being paid to issues such as communication of current information, isolation of symptomatic students, provision of medical care on- and off-campus, maintenance of hygienic conditions, food service delivery, and academic absence and instruction alternatives.

More information about H1N1 flu is available at the CDC website http://www.cdc.gov/h1n1flu/ and SRHD website http://www.srhd.org/topics/h1n1.asp. Information about local availability of the H1N1 vaccine (still in the testing and manufacturing phases) will appear here as information becomes available.

Sincerely, 

Vicki Olson, RN, BC, BSN, Health Center Director

Jeffery D. Hart , Assistant Dean of Students

Spokane Regional Health District

Pandemic H1N1 (swine) Flu Update

Last updated: 8/19/2009

The Spokane Regional Health District continues to work with the Washington State Department of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and local partners to assure early detection and to respond to the spread of the new H1N1 swine flu virus.


Information for Specific Groups

  • Flu Resources for Providers (DOH)

What can you do to protect yourself and others?

As with any contagious disease that spreads through the respiratory system, the Health District recommends the following precautions:

  • Get a flu shot each year to prevent the flu.
  • 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 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.
  • Regularly clean surfaces in your home that are touched often, like light switches, doorknobs, faucets, and appliance handles.
  • Don't share food, utensils, beverages, towels, lipstick, toys, cigarettes, or anything else that might become contaminated with germs.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth. Germs can spread by touching them.
  • Avoid close contact with sick people. Most germs are spread when a sick person coughs, sneezes, or talks.
  • If you have a cough, fever or the flu, stay home until symptoms are gone and until you or your kids have been free of fever (less than 100ºF, without the use of a fever-reducing medicine) for at least 24 hours.
Spokane Regional Health district provides individuals with disabilities reasonable accommodations. Requests may be made by calling 324-1480 or TDD 324-1464.

H1N1 Update - August 18, 2009. Vaccine Information

Vaccine information        

Gonzaga University is concerned about the health of your student.  We have been monitoring current events regarding the H1N1 (swine) flu virus and diligently working to prepare our students, staff, faculty and operations for whatever transpires with this situation.  Several University administrators attended a briefing/workgroup session hosted by the Spokane Regional Health District (SRHD) earlier this month.  Information about the H1N1 vaccine was presented and discussions took place as to how the vaccine will be distributed.  At this point the news appears encouraging.   

SRHD continues to emphasize personal precautions as the first line of defense against H1N1, as well as the seasonal flu.  This includes covering your cough or sneeze, frequent hand washing and hand sanitizer and cleaning common area surfaces that may serve as a collection point for the virus.  In most cases of H1N1 the patient has recovered without needing medical treatment.  For those experiencing flu-like symptoms the recommendation is to treat seasonal flu as if it may be H1N1 and to treat H1N1 as if it is the seasonal flu.  Because of overwhelming demand local labs are not presently testing for H1N1 unless the patient is hospitalized.  It seems likely that approach will continue through the flu season.  The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has issued revised guidelines regarding isolation of a person with flu or flu-like symptoms.  The latest recommendation essentially calls for self-isolation by the patient until 24 hours after fever has gone, typically 3-5 days.  Information from the CDC on H1N1 in the higher education environment is available here:   http://cdc.gov/h1n1flu/guidance/guidelines_colleges.htm 

The federal government will be providing H1N1 vaccine nationally in the fall, perhaps as early as mid-October.  SRHD expects a sufficient quantity to be earmarked for our area so that all groups identified as "priority" can be vaccinated.  Among the priority groups are young adults age 18-25.  This pretty well covers the college population.  It appears the H1N1 vaccine will be given in two doses, 21-28 days apart.  It is important to receive the second dose for the most effective protection.  Whether it is possible to provide the H1N1 vaccine at the same time as the seasonal flu shot is still being determined. 

Gonzaga will be working with SRHD to determine if vaccine can be allotted specifically to the University and how and when we can provide it to our students.   Vaccine allotted specifically to Gonzaga is not a certainty, but it is a possibility.  Many of the details are yet to be worked out because the vaccine is still in the clinical trial phase, which is expected to last until late September.  Although it is probable that Gonzaga students will be able to get the vaccine (on campus or elsewhere in the community), you may feel more comfortable arranging vaccination through your own medical provider during a planned visit home by your student.   We encourage you to do what feels best for your student's needs. 

SRHD has emphasized that a number of factors will impact public health planning for dealing with H1N1.  These include the rate at which the disease is transmitted, the outcome of clinical trials and the ability of vaccine manufacturers to produce quickly and in sufficient quantities.  As noted above the news appears to be encouraging.  We will know more once school begins again and students, here and at all campuses, are living and learning in close proximity.  Gonzaga University has made pandemic flu planning a priority at the highest levels of our administration.  All areas of the University are engaged in formulating a response for a range of situations, from only a few suspected cases among our usual seasonal flu to widespread confirmed cases in the local community.  One step being taken is an awareness campaign for all students, but targeted specifically at residence halls, aimed at general precautions such as those listed above.  Students arriving for move-in will see frequent reminders to cover their cough and similar messages.   

Another step is on-campus distribution of the seasonal flu vaccine.  Although the seasonal vaccine will not treat H1N1, it will contribute to a person's overall health and strengthened immunity during the flu season.  Through special funding the Health Center has arranged for seasonal flu shots at a cost to students of only $5 while supplies last.  Seasonal flu vaccine is available at the Health Center on a walk-in basis beginning on August 28.  For more information about open hours please visit the Health Center vaccine web page at: http://www.gonzaga.edu/Student-Development/support-for-students/wellness/health-center/flu-vaccine.asp 

The H1N1 situation is changing as new information develops.  Watch this space, as well as the CDC website http://www.cdc.gov/h1n1flu/ and SRHD website http://www.srhd.org/topics/h1n1.asp  for the most current information.

Friday, May 08, 2009 5:08 PM

 

2nd positive H1N1 swine influenza test result in Spokane

More cases expected as outbreak expands

Spokane, WA- The State of Washington's Department of Health has confirmed that Washington State now has 83 confirmed and 19 probable cases of H1N1 swine flu. Spokane received confirmation of its second case.  Several hundred additional samples at the state lab await testing, including some from Spokane.

"We know that this virus is in our community, and the important thing for people to do is to try to avoid getting or spreading the H1N1 swine virus," said Dr. Joel McCullough, Health Officer for the Spokane Regional Health District. "We expect that we will see more cases over the next days, weeks and perhaps months."

Although the virus is primarily causing mild to moderate symptoms, serious symptoms can occur. The Health District is stressing the importance of people taking simple actions to stop the spread of germs, including washing hands often, covering coughs with your sleeves - not your hands, and staying home from work or school if ill.

Dr. McCullough stresses that for most people who catch the H1N1 swine flu virus, symptoms can be managed at home through proper hydration and fever reduction. People should contact their health care provider by phone if they have serious symptoms such as high fever (102), difficulty breathing, or other symptoms, which would normally cause a person to seek medical care.

Dr. McCullough cautions that getting an accurate number of those who are ill with this virus will get to be more difficult as the focus shifts from testing all people with influenza like symptoms to testing those who have serious symptoms. "People naturally want to know how many cases of this virus are here, unfortunately, a reliable count of cases just will not be possible. There are also likely many people who have mild symptoms who are not seeking medical care."

As more human cases of (H1N1) swine influenza A virus infection are identified in the United States and internationally, the Spokane Regional Health District continues to work closely with other public health agencies and community partners to implement prevention and control measures.

For updated and reliable information visit the following websites:

International World Health Organization

National Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

State of Washington Washington State Department of Health

Spokane County Spokane Regional Health District (visit "In the News")  

Simple ways that everyone can help:

  • Use and teach proper germ-reducing behavior:

  • Wash hands well and often - use hand gels when soap and water aren't handy

  • It is best to cough or sneeze in your sleeve or shoulder - not your hands - if you use a tissue, through it away immediately then wash your hands.

  • Stay home when you are sick and keep kids home when they are ill.

  • Prepare your family for an emergency:

  • Make sure you have food, prescriptions, over-the-counter medicines, and other supplies to last your family and pets a few weeks in case you need to provide for yourselves for a while.

  • Stay informed: These websites provide reliable, updated information on the H1N1 situation and other health related topics.

  • International www.who.int

  • National www.cdc.gov/swineflu

  • State of Washington www.doh.wa.gov

  • Spokane County www.srhd.org

  • The CDC is reporting 1693 laboratory confirmed human infections and over 849 probable cases awaiting confirmation from 44 states in the United States.

Tuesday, May 05, 2009 11:05 AM

CDC confirms 1 positive H1N1 swine influenza test result in Spokane

2nd test still pending

 

Spokane, WA- The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has notified the State of Washington's Department of Health that the CDC has confirmed 9 cases of H1N1 swine flu in Washington, including 1 from Spokane. An additional 36 probable samples from the state have not yet been tested for confirmation, including the second probable case from our community. The positive test result was from a Spokane man in his 40's.

"We know that this virus is in our community, and the important thing for people to do is to try to avoid getting or spreading the H1N1 swine virus," said Dr. Joel McCullough, Health Officer for the Spokane Regional Health District. "Although the virus is primarily causing mild symptoms, serious symptoms can occur. It is really important for people to do simple things to stop the spread of germs, including staying home from work or school if ill."

Dr. McCullough stresses that for most people who catch the H1N1 swine flu virus, symptoms can be managed at home through proper hydration and fever reduction. People should contact their health care provider by phone if they have serious symptoms such as high fever (102), difficulty breathing, or other symptoms, which would normally cause a person to seek medical care.

Dr. McCullough cautions that getting an accurate number of those who are ill with this virus is getting to be more difficult. "People naturally want to know how many cases of this virus are here, but the confirmation process can take several weeks, so a reliable count of cases is just not possible. Also, there are likely many people who have mild symptoms who are not seeking medical care."

As more human cases of (H1N1) swine influenza A virus infection are identified in the United States and internationally, the Spokane Regional Health District continues to work closely with other public health agencies and community partners to implement prevention and control measures. As of yesterday, Washington State reports 45 probable cases, and health officials say that more cases are likely to be identified over the next days and weeks.

Dr. McCullough says that as health officials continue to learn more about the virus and its spread, recommendations for slowing the spread of the illness will likely be modified. "Each day we learn more about this new virus, which helps us to take steps to protect the community's health."

A 24-hour line is available at 1-800-CDC-INFO. The Washington State Department of Health has launched a new menu-driven recorded line with basic information, symptoms, prevention, treatment and what to do if you're sick: 1-888-703-4364.

International World Health Organization

National Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

State of Washington Washington State Department of Health

Spokane County Spokane Regional Health District (visit "In the News")              

Kristi Siahaya

Public Health Educator, Immunization Outreach

Disease Prevention and Response
Spokane Regional Health District
1101 W College Avenue
Spokane, WA 99201-2095
(509) 324-1480
(509) 232-1706 Fax

mailto:ksiahaya@spokanecounty.org
www.srhd.org

Public Health - Always working for a safer and healthier community

Monday, May 04, 2009 4:13 PM

Daily Report

Spokane, WA- As more human cases of (H1N1) swine influenza A virus infection are identified in the United States and internationally, the Spokane Regional Health District continues to work closely with other public health agencies and community partners to implement prevention and control measures.

Washington State currently reports 35 probable cases, and health officials say that more cases are likely to be identified over the next days and weeks.

"We know that this virus is in our area, and the important thing for people to do is to try to avoid getting or spreading the H1N1 swine virus," said Dr. Joel McCullough, Health Officer for the Spokane Regional Health District. "Although the virus is primarily causing mild symptoms, serious symptoms can occur."

Dr. McCullough cautions that getting an accurate number of those who are ill with this virus is getting to be more difficult. "People naturally want to know how many cases of this virus are here. Unfortunately the labs are getting a backlog, and the confirmation process can take several weeks, so a reliable count of cases is just not possible. Also, there are likely many people who have mild symptoms who do not seek medical care."

Washington State's Department of Health has received a shipment of antiviral medications and supplies, which will be distributed across the state over the next few days. Spokane's supply should arrive tomorrow. The supplies will be used to help protect health care workers and emergency medical staff who care for those who are ill, and the antiviral medications are to be used to treat people who have serious symptoms.

Dr. McCullough says that as health officials continue to learn more about the virus and its spread, recommendations for slowing the spread of the illness will likely be modified. "Each day we learn more about this new virus, which helps us to take steps to protect the community's health."

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have confirmed 286 cases of H1N1 swine flu in 36 U.S. states, including one death. There are also 700 probable cases in 44 states. There have been 35 hospitalizations known to be linked to this virus. The World Health Organization says there are about 900 confirmed cases in 18 countries.

A 24-hour line is available at 1-800-CDC-INFO. The Washington State Department of Health has launched a new menu-driven recorded line with basic information, symptoms, prevention, treatment and what to do if you're sick: 1-888-703-4364.

International World Health Organization

National Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

State of Washington Washington State Department of Health

Spokane County Spokane Regional Health District (visit "In the News")    

Julie Graham

Public Information Manager

Spokane Regional Health District
1101 W College Avenue
Spokane WA 99201
(509) 324-1539
(509) 979-5574 (cell)
mailto:jgraham@spokanecounty.org
www.srhd.org

Public Health - Always working for a safer and healthier community

Sunday, May 03, 2009 2:52 PM

SPOKANE---Spokane Regional Health District (SRHD) is reporting that the number of probable cases of H1N1 swine influenza has risen to 35 in Washington State, including the two cases in Spokane County. Washington State has received it's first shipment of antiviral medications from the Strategic National Stockpile.

The Health District is investigating contacts of the two likely cases, and believes that as this influenza appears to be spreading easily among people that additional cases in our community are likely. National public health officials say that so far there is no indication that the H1N1 is worse that the seasonal flu that circulates every year. That said they caution that this is still something that people should take seriously; because although it causes mild illness in most people, more serious symptoms are possible.

As this is a new influenza virus, the Health District is continuing to aggressively monitor the situation and illness reports in Spokane and say that because the illness is easily spread, we can expect to see more H1N1 illness in our community. The community is encouraged to continue health practices, including covering coughs and sneezes, washing hands regularly and thoroughly, and staying home if sick.

The SRHD's Call Center will be reactivated if conditions warrant. A 24-hour line is available at 1-800-CDC-INFO. The Washington State Department of Health has launched a new menu-driven recorded line with basic information, symptoms, prevention, treatment and what to do if you're sick: 1-888-703-4364.

International World Health Organization

National Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

State of Washington Washington State Department of Health

Spokane County Spokane Regional Health District (visit "In the News")       

visit the news archive

5/2/09 Update

SPOKANE---Spokane Regional Health District (SRHD) Health Officer Dr. Joel McCullough will speak with local media this afternoon to provide updated information on the H1N1 flu outbreak.

"I know that the information on this situation has and will continue to change, and I understand that can be confusing for people," said Dr. McCullough. "I wish I had solid answers, but because this is a brand new virus, we are learning more about it every day. Our information and recommendations will likely change frequently. Please know that we will keep the community updated as we learn more."

National public health officials say that so far there is no indication that the H1N1 is worse that the seasonal flu that circulates every year. That said they caution that this is still something that people should take seriously; because although it causes mild illness in most people, more serious symptoms are possible.

Statewide there are now 16 probable cases, with 2 in Spokane County. The Health District is investigating contacts of the first two likely cases.  According to Dr. McCullough, the second case is a school-aged child who is a member of the first cases' family. "Because this child was not at school during the time he would have been contagious, we do not believe that there was an exposure risk at the school."

As this is a new influenza virus, the Health District is continuing to aggressively monitor the situation and illness reports in Spokane and say that because the illness is easily spread, we can expect to see more H1N1 illness in our community. The community is encouraged to continue health practices, including covering coughs and sneezes, washing hands regularly and thoroughly, and staying home if sick.

The SRHD's Call Center will be reactivated if conditions warrant. A 24-hour line is available at 1-800-CDC-INFO.  The Washington State Department of Health has launched a new menu-driven recorded line with basic information, symptoms, prevention, treatment and what to do if you're sick: 1-888-703-4364.

International World Health Organization

National Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

State of Washington Washington State Department of Health

Spokane County Spokane Regional Health District (visit "In the News")

Julie Graham

Public Information Manager
Spokane Regional Health District
1101 W College Avenue
Spokane WA 99201
(509) 324-1539
(509) 979-5574 (cell)

mailto:jgraham@spokanecounty.org
www.srhd.org

Public Health - Always working for a safer and healthier community

 

 

Current as of May 1, 2009 at 10:50 am

Health officials across the nation are reporting that this outbreak is primarily causing mild symptoms and that most of the illnesses are able to be managed in the same way that seasonal flu is (with appropriate care at home- stay hydrated by drinking lots of liquids and treat fever). In very rare cases illness warranting hospitalization have occurred elsewhere in the nation.

Spokane still has only one probable case of the H1N1 flu, and possible cases of H1N1 swine flu are being reported to local public health authorities today.  The Spokane Regional Health District's Health Officer, Dr. Joel McCullough reports that the flu virus is spreading in a manner similar to the seasonal flu, and local cases are expected to occur. Because this virus appears to be spreading very easily between people, as is seen with seasonal influenza, health officials are investigating possible cases and their contacts to identify the scope of the illness.

Persons who are ill with influenza like illness are being tested locally, with positive "quick test" results being sent to the State lab for further testing  Health officials in Spokane reported Friday that the majority of (6/7) cases that tested positive for flu in Spokane later tested negative for the H1N1 flu at the state lab.  "Quick test" procedures in local health facilities are not as precise as the more sophisticated tests conducted at the state level.

People who believe they may have been exposed to flu should continue to stay at home rather than risk spreading the virus to healthy persons.  Reports of potential flu cases at some local schools are being evaluated on an individual basis, and based on the mild symptoms this virus is typically causing, school closures will be unlikely at this point.

Other tips include:

  • Avoid close contact. Avoid close contact with people who are sick. When you are sick, keep your distance from others to protect them from getting sick too.

  • Stay home when you are sick. If possible, stay home from work, school, and errands when you are sick. You will help prevent others from catching your illness.

  • Cover your mouth and nose. Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing or sneezing. It may prevent those around you from getting sick.

  • Clean your hands. Washing your hands often will help protect you from germs.

  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth. Germs are often spread when a person touches something that is contaminated with germs and then touches his or her eyes, nose, or mouth.

  • Practice other good health habits. Get plenty of sleep, be physically active, manage your stress, drink plenty of fluids, and eat nutritious food.

Although there have been school and event closures in other areas of the state and in Oregon, local health officials have made no such recommendation, based on no known confirmed cases in Spokane County and the mild symptoms exhibited by possible cases.  The outbreak continues to be closely-monitored by local health officials and information will be given as the situation changes.   Visit www.cdc.gov for updates.

Swine Flu Update April 30, 2009

April 30, 2009

Rumors or other inaccurate or incomplete information about the H1N1 (swine flu) virus may already be circulating on campus.   At present there are no confirmed or probable cases of H1N1 involving a campus community member.  We are still within the traditional flu season so students are being tested for the flu and other associated conditions.  This is standard procedure in any year and not specific to the H1N1 situation.  The local Health District is responsible for following up on any potential cases of H1N1.  They have not advised us of any cases requiring additional follow-up.  If we are advised of any probable or confirmed cases involving a campus community member we will notify the community via email.  The University will provide the most accurate and timely information about our campus risk as it becomes available. 

Please check the Gonzaga Health Center webpage for general information about the H1N1 flu:

http://www.gonzaga.edu/Student-Development/Support-for-Students/Wellness/Health-Center/default1.asp

Sue Weitz, Ph.D.

Vice President for Student Life

Gonzaga University

502 E. Boone Ave.

Spokane, WA 99258

(509) 313-4100  phone

(509) 313-4168  fax

Swine Flu Update April 27, 2009

April 27, 2009

SWINE FLU - HEALTH UPDATE

We are hopeful that the swine flu pandemic will not appear on our campus.  However, it is important to take precautions and be aware of the symptoms and course of action should you experience symptoms related to the swine flu.  We are following and will continue to follow the directions from the Spokane Health District and the Center for Disease Control.

There have been no reported cases of swine flu in Washington State at this time.  Please check the CDC website for current information as it is changing daily:  www.cdc.gov/swineflu  or the Spokane Regional Health District website:  www.SRHD.org

 If you have returned from  Mexico, California, Texas, Kansas, Ohio, or New York City and you become ill with flu-like symptoms within a week of returning,  please visit the Health Center or see your doctor for evaluation of your symptoms.  Symptoms of swine flu are similar to the regular seasonal flu and may include fever, headache, lethargy, decreased appetite, coughing, runny nose, sore throat, nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. 

 To prevent the flu, including swine flu, take everyday preventive actions:

  • Cover your mouth and nose with tissue when you cough or sneeze and throw it in the trash after you use it.

  • Wash hands often with soap and water. Alcohol based cleaners are also effective.

  • Try to avoid close contact with sick people.

  • If you get the flu, stay home from work or school and limit contact with others to keep from infecting them.

  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth. Germs spread this way.

  • You may take antiviral drugs if your doctor recommends them if you are diagnosed with the flu.

If you have any questions or concerns, please visit the web sites listed above or call the Health Center at 313-4052 from off campus or extension 4052 from on campus.  Thank you!

Sue Weitz, Ph.D.

Vice President for Student Life

Gonzaga University

502 E. Boone Ave.

Spokane, WA 99258

(509) 313-4100  phone

(509) 313-4168  fax

http://www.gonzaga.edu