Some states see declining H1N1 rates

Emergency Management Alert, December 8, 2009

Hospitals in Massachusetts are seeing a decline in patients with H1N1 flu symptoms, reports the Boston Globe. Children's Hospital in Boston has closed is isolated area for those with flu-like symptoms, and Massachusetts General Hospital is reporting drop in cases. Still, the Massachusetts Department of Public Health says it's too early to tell if the reported decline is accurate.

Benjamin Kruskal, MD, director of infection control for Harvard Vanguard, says not enough of the vaccine has been made available yet to be the cause for the decline of cases, reports the Globe. Kruskal says warmer than usual weather might have attributed to the dip.

South Dakota is one of several states now reporting on "regional" flu outbreaks, instead of "widespread" outbreaks, reports the Argus Leader. School attendance across the state is back up as well. The Illinois Department of Health has also announced a recent decrease in H1N1 cases, according to the Pekin Daily Times.

 Still, federal health authorities are warning that the H1N1 virus, like other pandemics, come in waves, and hospitals should expect another surge. They are also warning that serious pneumonia cases among young adults with swine flu are rising, reports the Globe.

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