Saturday, May 2, 2009

Swine Flu in Utah.

Swine flu confirmed in Summit Co.
May 2nd, 2009 @ 2:05pm

PARK CITY -- Summit County health officials say the CDC has confirmed a case of H1N1 virus, or swine flu, in a school-aged child from Park City.

Steve Jenkins, director of the Summit County Health Department, said during a news conference Saturday morning that the student apparently contracted the virus while in Mexico on spring break. Since then, the student has fully recovered.

Park City schools will remain closed through May 10 to limit the possibility of transmitting the virus, said Tom VanGorder, director of student services for the Park City School District.

The state's first probable cases of the virus were reported in three students from that district on Wednesday. The district closed schools there while awaiting test results from the Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta.

By week's end, Utah health officials had sent nine probable cases to the CDC for testing. With the confirmed case, there are now five probable cases reported in Summit County, three in Salt Lake County, and one in Morgan-Weber Health District. Results of those tests could arrive as early as Sunday. So far, all of those cases are said to be mild. None have required hospitalization.

Dr. David Sundwall, executive director of the Utah Department of Health, said he expects more cases to be confirmed. Yet he is not greatly concerned that this will be a serious epidemic. He says the virus appears to be acting like seasonal flu.

Saturday Utah received some kits from the CDC that will allow it to confirm cases within a day. The health department said it will take a couple of days to test the kits before they are put into use.

Early detection can be more critical than treatment. It can also make a difference in how long or even if a school closes.

Right now, all Park City schools and Judge Memorial High School in Salt Lake are closed.

Mexico reported no new deaths from swine flu overnight. But the virus keeps spreading around the world, with new cases confirmed in Europe and Asia.

Mexico's confirmed caseload grew to 443. The U.S. count rose to 171 and there were 716 confirmed swine flu cases worldwide.

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