H1N1 (aka "Swine Flu") Information for the Denver Seminary Community

  • May 1, 2009

What Denver Seminary Is Doing

At this point, Denver Seminary's actions in regard to the H1N1 flu are preventative and precautionary. There are no suspected cases of H1N1 infection at Denver Seminary.

Denver Seminary is in contact with officials from the city of Littleton and will notify the campus community of any public health advisories that may affect campus operations. Be sure to check your email and Denver Seminary's website for any updates (if you have subscribed to the SMS Messaging service, you may also receive text messages to your mobile phone).

Education

Denver Seminary is providing general information about the virus on our website; this information includes links to authoritative information, such as the Tri-County Health Department's web page.

Preventative Measures

1. Denver Seminary encourages all students, staff, faculty and visitors to stay home if you feel sick. The easiest way to prevent the spread of this or any disease is to take the time you need to rest and get better and not expose others to your illness.

With the semester coming to an end, we realize that students and faculty may feel added pressure to come to campus, even if they are not feeling well, but if you are sick, please stay home. We will work with you on completing your work. Your health and the health of others on campus are higher priorities.

2. Starting Monday, May 4, all public areas of campus will be equipped with bottles of hand sanitizer and boxes of tissue.

3. Beginning immediately, the cleaning staff of Denver Seminary will take extra precautions to sanitize door handles and counters as a part of their regular cleaning routine.

4. The entire campus community is encouraged to use common sense, and follow these simple precautions recommended by the CDC:

  • Wash your hands frequently
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick
  • If you cough or sneeze, cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or cough/sneeze into your sleeve rather than your hands
  • Avoid touching your mouth, nose and eyes with your hands
  • Practice other good health habits such as getting enough rest, drinking plenty of fluids, eating healthy food and managing stress.

General Information about H1N1

What is H1N1?

H1N1 is a respiratory virus that has also been referred to as "Swine Flu" because outbreaks of this flu typically occur in pigs. Humans do not normally catch this flu, however this particular virus has been transmitted to humans and can spread from human to human. It has also been referred to as "North American Influenza," because the first confirmed cases occurred in Mexico.

There is potential for a worldwide epidemic or pandemic because: almost all humans have no natural immunity to this virus, they have not been exposed to this virus before, and, unlike the bird flu from several years ago, this strain is spreading from human to human.

Since this virus begins with pigs, it is safe to eat pork?

Yes. It is safe to consume pork.

How does a person catch the virus?

The virus is spread by catching an infected respiratory droplet. If a person with the virus coughs or sneezes, they may spew the virus on to surfaces or another person. If you touch the virus droplets and then touch your mouth, eyes or nose, you become infected, too.

If I had a flu shot this year, am I protected against H1N1?

No. There is no vaccine for the H1N1 virus at this time.

How do I protect myself from this virus?

There are some common sense practices that you do to protect yourself and help stop the spread of this virus:

  • Avoid contact with those who are sick.
  • If you become sick, the CDC recommends "you stay home from work or school and limit contact with others to keep from infecting them."
  • Try not to touch your eyes, nose or mouth
  • When you cough or sneeze, do so into the crook of your elbow or, better still, into a tissue - and then throw the tissue away.
  • Wash your hands often using soap and water or an alcohol-based hand cleaner.
  • Practice other good health habits such as getting enough rest, drinking plenty of fluids, eating healthy food and managing stress.
What are the symptoms of H1N1?

The symptoms are similar to the symptoms of the regular human flu. Symptoms may range from mild to severe.

  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Sore throat
  • Body aches
  • Headache
  • Chills
  • Fatigue
  • In a few cases, diarrhea or vomiting

Like seasonal flu, H1N1 may cause a worsening of underlying chronic medical conditions. If you feel sick, stay at home. Also like the seasonal flu, there is generally no treatment required for mild cases other than rest, increased fluids and over the counter medications. You may want to call your doctor's office and seek advice about whether or not you should go into the office.

If you exhibit severe symptoms such as difficulty breathing or shortness of breath, pain or pressure in the chest or abdomen, sudden dizziness, confusion, or severe or persistent vomiting, call your doctor's office immediately. In all emergencies, dial 911 or go to your nearest emergency room.

Where can I get more information?

Complete and up-to-date information about the H1N1 Flu can be found on the Tri-County Health Department's home page: http://www.tchd.org/. The Tri-County Health Department serves Adams, Arapahoe and Douglas Counties in Colorado.

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