On Monday, May 4, the Massachusetts Department of Public Health updated the total number of state-wide H1N1 virus cases to 34, up from 6.
The reason for the large sudden jump was due to more lab testing sites where probable cases could be confirmed. Previously, samples had to be sent only to the Center for Disease Control in Atlanta, causing a serious backlog.
All Massachusetts H1N1 cases were unhospitalized at the time of the information being released. Any of those who had been hospitalized previously (3) had already been discharged.
Residents of Massachusetts are able to call 2-1-1 for more basic information about the H1N1 (swine flu) virus.
The following is from an earlier blog post:
The CDC apparently is taking aggressive action against the spread of H1N1, by aiming for response goals to “1. Reduce transmission and illness severity, and 2. Provide information to help health care providers, public health officials and the public address the challenges posed by this emergency.”
As of May 3, the CDC was scheduled to complete a deployment to each continental US state of 25% of the supplies in the Strategic National Stockpile. Also, reports from the CDC say the Federal Government and manufacturers are already working on developing an H1N1 vaccine.
Something good is coming out of this, to look on the positive side – people are more focused on hand-washing and other healthy hygiene habits now. If these habits keep up, we decrease the spread of all seasonal flu viruses which also claim thousands of lives every year in the US alone.