Influenza activity has been high in the United States since December 2012 including Minnesota.
While the vast majority of those infected with this virus have had mild, self-limited disease up to this point, some individuals with the following underlying health conditions have had more severe infections and complications:
The CDC, state and county health departments continue to monitor influenza activity carefully.
Infected individuals are considered contagious (able to spread the virus) up to a day before symptoms begin and until at least 24 hours after the fever has resolved and perhaps longer. Symptoms typically resolve within 7-10 days. The virus is spread by coughing, sneezing or by touching objects which have virus on them and then touching the eyes, nose and mouth.
Typical signs and symptoms of infection include:
If infection or close contact exposure to someone with influenza is suspected AND you are at high risk for complications OR you have severe symptoms, please contact Health Services at 726-8155 as soon as possible. Severe flu symptoms can include:
Treatment of infected individuals who are at low risk for complications typically focuses on managing symptoms, such as treating fever with Ibuprofen or Tylenol, maintaining hydration with fluids, and getting extra rest. Tamiflu, an antiviral medication, is prescribed to treat infection and also to prevent infection in those exposed; however, the CDC has recommended that Tamiflu use be LIMITED to those at highest risk for severe infection and complications (see above). UMD Health Services has a limited supply of Tamiflu from the federal government stockpile program.
The most important strategies for managing the influenza virus on university campuses focus on planning, education and prevention. UMD and the CDC recommend that everyone who is eligible be vaccinated for seasonal influenza. UMD has hosted two mass vaccination clinics in October 2012 and will host an additional clinic January 30th 2013.
Since the influenza virus is highly contagious, it cannot be over-stated the IMPORTANCE OF LIMITING YOUR EXPOSURE TO OTHERS IF YOU ARE ILL.
LIMIT YOUR EXPOSURE TO OTHERS UNTIL AFTER YOUR FEVER IS GONE FOR 24 HOURS WITHOUT THE USE OF FEVER RELIEVER SUCH AS TYLENOL OR IBUPROFEN.
You can minimize your risk of acquiring or spreading the virus if you:
UMD recommends that all students be prepared for influenza by bringing to school:
Please refer to the links listed on our web page for additional information on influenza, UMD's Pandemic Influenza Response Plan or call UMD Health Services at 726-8155.
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