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New Jersey Identified Five Probable Swine Flu Cases

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The New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Services has identified five probable cases of swine flu and is currently arranging for confirmatory testing at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

All five individuals have mild forms of the flu and are recovering at home. None were hospitalized. Four of the five probable cases had traveled recently to Mexico and the fifth had traveled to California. The patients include residents from various counties throughout New Jersey. No further information is available while CDC confirmation is pending. Confirmatory results are expected back within 48 hours.

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The cases were identified through enhanced statewide monitoring and preliminary clinical samples were tested at the New Jersey Public Health and Environmental Laboratories.

“We recognize that swine flu will likely be an ongoing public health issue. Fortunately, as elsewhere in the country, these probable cases have mild illness,” said Commissioner Heather Howard. “Right now, I want to emphasize that the best form of prevention is to observe good health hygiene, including covering your coughs and sneezes, washing your hands frequently and staying home from school or work if you’re sick.”

Earlier today, Governor Jon S. Corzine convened a meeting of cabinet members and key health department staff to review and coordinate preparedness plans across state agencies and to ensure an efficient response.