Shelby County Announces Second Probable H1N1 Case

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The Memphis and Shelby County Health Department is working closely with the Tennessee Department of Health lab in identifying the second probable case of the novel H1N1 virus (swine influenza) in the state. The specimen will be sent to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to confirm preliminary results.

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"The Memphis and Shelby County Health Department is continuing to proactively respond to this public health emergency," said Shelby County Mayor AC Wharton. "We are continuing to be in communication with state and federal health officials which is consistent with our earlier approaches of expanded testing and increased surveillance in order to detect human cases of swine flu in Shelby County. It is likely that more cases may be identified due to these stepped efforts; however, we are prepared to handle this public health emergency.

"The patient is a Shelby County resident and is receiving treatment for symptoms. The Memphis and Shelby County Health Department is working with local officials to identify and provide antiviral medication to the patient's family and high risk close contacts. Anyone identified as a close contact of the patient will be notified. Consistent with CDC guidelines and recommendations, the school where the student attends, has been dismissed and will remain dismissed for at least seven days. All school associated activities will also be cancelled."

"While we want citizens to be informed about this virus, we also want to caution against panic," said Helen Morrow, chief medical officer at the Memphis and Shelby County Health Department. "Given that, we want to continue to emphasize that people practice good hygiene by washing their hands frequently, coughing into their sleeve or a tissue, and if you're sick, stay at home. This is the best information you can use to protect yourself and your family's health."

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