AUGUSTA, Maine — State health officials have identified three new cases of H1N1 “swine” flu, bringing the total number to 10 in Maine.
The new cases involve a child in Cumberland County and one adult each in York and Kennebec counties.
As of Wednesday, the totals are four adults and one child in York County, three adults in Kennebec County, and one child each in Cumberland and Penobscot counties, according to the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention.
Four of the five York County cases have been confirmed by the federal Centers for Disease Control, and half of the 10 people identified with H1N1 by the Maine CDC have a history of travel.
“We expect that as this virus spreads, we will see more Mainers with H1N1 who have not traveled,” said Dr. Dora Anne Mills, director of the Maine CDC. “Our goal remains to slow the spread of H1N1, and we can do that by following proper respiratory hygiene and staying informed.”
Mills said there currently is no vaccine for this strain of flu, but that the U.S. CDC reports one is being produced and may be available this fall.
She also reiterated the need for people to practice proper precautions, including:
– Cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue or sleeve.
– Wash hands often with soap and water, especially after coughing or sneezing. Alcohol-based hand cleaners also are effective.
– Avoid close contact with sick people.
– If you get sick, stay home from work or school for seven days and limit contact with others to avoid infecting them.