Archive for Thursday, May 7, 2009

Three cases of swine flu confirmed in WyCo

May 7, 2009

Wyandotte County has the dubious distinction of having more confirmed cases of swine flu than any other county in Kansas.

On Wednesday, state health officials said two new cases of the 2009 H1N1 influenza A virus have been confirmed in Wyandotte County. One case involves a child and the other an adult.

That brings the total number of cases in Wyandotte County to three. On Monday, the Kansas Department of Health and Environment said another Wyandotte County child, a 2-year-old, had been hospitalized for five days at Children’s Mercy Hospital with swine flu but had since recovered and been discharged.

In all, Kansas has confirmed seven cases of swine flu and cites another case as probable swine flu.

KDHE said the probable case is in Johnson County and involves an adult who has traveled to Mexico, the epicenter of the current outbreak. The person remains hospitalized. Johnson County also has a confirmed case that involves a Texas resident visiting the area. That patient is being treated but is not hospitalized.

“I am not surprised to see additional cases in Kansas,” said Jason Eberhart-Phillips, state health officer and director of the Division of Health at KDHE. “But the distribution of new cases is revealing. It tells us that the virus has probably entered the state on multiple occasions from multiple sources.”

He noted that until the first Wyandotte County case was presumptively confirmed late Sunday, all cases in the state had been associated with travel to areas with known transmission of the virus.

“The child in the Wyandotte County case had not recently traveled away from the Kansas City metro area, or come into contact with anyone who had been to an area known to be affected by the epidemic,” Eberhart-Phillips said. “This suggests that the virus may be getting a foothold in that area.”

A Dickinson County couple were Kansas’ first confirmed cases. A Texan visiting Johnson County was confirmed as another case, and there also is a confirmed case involving a child in Sedgwick County. Officials in Platte County, Mo., north of Kansas City, have confirmed the Show-Me State’s first case of swine flu.

Health officials recommend individuals take standard precautions to avoid getting ill such as washing your hands, covering your cough, and staying home when you are sick. Travel to Mexico is also not recommended at this time.


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