I’ve been sick with some kind flu since monday but never developed a fever, just a bad cough wracking my body that it now gives me splitting headaches. That would be May 18. Apparently, Health Secretary Dr. Francisco Duque III Thursday night confirmed the first case of Influenza A(H1N1) infection in the country—in a 10-year-old Filipino girl who arrived from the United States with her parents on May 18.

““The DoH confirms today the first case of AH1N1 in the Philippines. She is a female traveler who arrived in the country on May 18 from the United States, whose throat specimen tested positive based on results from the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM),” Duque said.

It is a bit worrisome now that there is one confirmed case in our country. What should one do?

The public should observe proper hygiene, strengthen resistance and do social distancing—avoid going to crowded areas if the need is not urgent. Other precautions:

1. Frequent handwashing

Wash your hands, wash your hands, wash your hands! “Hand washing with soap and water for at least 20 seconds after touching objects, surfaces or another person’s hands can physically remove cold viruses,” Dr. Clifford W. Bassett, an assistant clinical professor of medicine at the Long Island College Hospital and faculty member of NYU School of Medicine (Read 10 ways to prevent Swine Flu)

2. Covering up coughs and sneezes,

3. Staying away from work or school if not feeling well

4. Stay away from crowded places

5. Avoid hugging and kissing at public gatherings or the beso-beso. Let’s just wave at each other instead.

I read that the virus appears responsive to the antiviral drugs, like Tamiflu and Relenza, which can be used to reduce the severity of the flu if used within two days of the appearance of symptoms. . Tamiflu is readily available in Mercury drugstores costing around 180 pesos per tablet but please don’t panic-buy and deprive others who might need it.

We all need to monitor ourselves closely and check for symptoms that include a fever of more than 100, coughing, joint aches, severe headache and, in some cases, vomiting and diarrhea.

I wrote about the Swine Flu last month and provided some interim care and FAQ below. Just read more on it.

Anyway, what are your other precautions? Care to share?

A (H1N1) Influenza Booklet

Swine Flu Interim Care and FAQ

Swine Influenza Guidance Homecare

FAQ About Swine Influenza

Interim Guidelines on Antiviral Recommendations

Update as of June 4, 2009

The number of confirmed A(H1N1) cases in the Philippines rose to 29 after seven more people were confirmed to have contracted the disease, including a staff of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and another De La Salle-Manila student, the Department of Health said Thursday.

In a press conference, Health Sec. Francisco Duque III said the second De La Salle University student might have had contact with the Lasallian female exchange student confirmed with A(H1N1) infection last Wednesday.

A dzBB radio report quoted Duque as saying that an ADB employee also tested positive for the virus.

Source: DOH: A(H1N1) cases now 29, including ADB staff

About Noemi Lardizabal-Dado

You may contact Noemi (noemidado @ gmail.com) for speaking and consultancy services in the following areas: Parenting in the Digital Age (includes pro-active parenting on cyber-bullying and bullying) ; Social Business ; Reinventing One’s Life; and social media engagement. Our parenting workshop is called "Prep to Prime (P2P): Parenting in the Digital Age (An Un­Workshop)" P2P Un­Workshops are conducted by two golden women in their prime, Noemi and Jane, who have a century’s worth of experience between them. They are both accomplished professionals who chose to become homemakers. This 180­degree turn also put them on a different life course which includes blogging, social media engagement and citizen advocacy. They call their un­workshops Prep to Prime or P2P, for short, to emphasize the breadth of their parenting experience. They tackle different aspects and issues of parenting ­­ from managing pregnancies, prepping for the school years of children, dealing with househelp, managing the household budget, to maximizing one’s prime life and staying healthy through the senior years.

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