Time now to practice sensibility
Published 1:22 pm Monday, May 4, 2009
It’s not time to panic; it’s time to be sensible. As of Friday, Alabama health officials had found two probable cases of swine flu in the state, both in the Huntsville area, and they were testing dozens more samples for evidence of the infection.
The concern with swine flu is not the severity of the flu itself; it is the potential rapid spread that could cripple businesses and schools because of absences.
While breathless news reports and rumors make it seem as if Mexico has had a high death rate from the disease, Alabama state health officer Dr. Donald Williamson pointed out last week that if reported numbers are correct, the rate is not higher than that for normal seasonal flu.
And with better options for health care in the United States, most of us are only at risk for a mild illness if we get sick and get treated quickly.
But, as Williamson and other health officials have pointed out, curbing the spread of the swine flu is what’s important — as is coming up with a plan for your business in the event of large-scale absences and a plan for your family if schools or daycares are closed.
Here are simple precautions you can take to avoid getting sick and to help stop the spread of the flu: