Manitoba Bulletin #22 H1N1 Flu

June 15, 2009

· Manitoba Health and Healthy Living is reporting 33 new confirmed cases of H1N1 flu, bringing the Manitoba total to 152 reported laboratory-confirmed cases.· There are currently 30 people admitted to intensive-care units in Manitoba with respiratory illnesses; not all are related to H1N1 influenza.
· Manitoba is also working to provide more doctors and nurses in First Nations communities experiencing influenza outbreaks. Over the weekend, two nurse practitioners who responded to the call for assistance travelled north to work. Two doctors who responded will leave later this week.
· A number of doctors and medical residents have also expressed interest in helping out. Details and arrangements for these professionals to assist are being worked out. There are a number of licensing and supervision issues that need to be worked through. This effort is intended to help provide for a longer-term solution.
· Manitoba Healthy and Healthy Living has been advised that nursing stations in northern Manitoba are stocked with masks and other supplies. Manitoba Public Health recommends the use of masks by health-care professionals in health-care settings based on a case-by-case assessment of exposure. In most situations, masks have not been recommended for general use by the public. Improper use of masks could actually cause spread of infection.
· Health Links—Info Santé continues to handle calls, receiving close to 200 over the weekend, and has increased staff to manage the calls.
· All Manitobans are at risk for exposure to the H1N1 virus. The influenza outbreak is provincewide and it is likely that H1N1 is present in every community in Manitoba. Although there has been an increase in the number of people with severe respiratory illness, this has been a small proportion of the people who have ‘the flu’ in Manitoba in the last two months. The majority of people in Manitoba who have become ill have not required hospitalization.
· In Manitoba, there continues to be no public health reason to close schools, community centres or other public gathering places or to avoid travel to any community. There also has not been a public health reason to exclude people from any public setting based on their ethnic background or home community. The same basic precautions are still the best defense against H1N1 influenza, not matter where you are or who you are with.

· If you have symptoms of flu-like illness, such as fever, cough, aches and tiredness, you are most contagious for three to four days, but it is possible to spread the disease for up to a week once your symptoms start to appear. You should:
– Contact your health-care provider or visit your nearest health-care centre if you are concerned that you may need advice or care, especially if your symptoms are severe or worsening
(i.e. shortness of breath, dehydration, worsening fever, cough or weakness). It is important to seek prompt care if you are concerned you need it, as early intervention is important in treating severe influenza-like illness.
– Stay home from school or work while you are ill and limit unnecessary contact with others.
– You can also call Health Links–Info Santé at 788‑8200 or 1-888-315-9257 (toll-free) if you need personal advice on self care or when to seek further care.
· Manitobans should continue to take the following precautions:
– Cover a cough or sneeze by coughing or sneezing into your elbow or sleeve or using a tissue to cover your nose and mouth.
– Wash your hands often with soap and water, especially after you cough or sneeze. Hand sanitizers are also effective.
– Limit touching of your eyes, nose or mouth.
– Take steps to maintain your health by taking care of yourself and those in your care including eating a healthy, balanced diet, avoiding cigarette smoke and other harmful substances, being active and getting enough rest and sleep. If you or someone in your care has a chronic condition, you can also get the help needed for effective care from your health-care provider.
· For more information about H1N1 flu, see

Summary of all confirmed H1N1 cases in Manitoba as of June 15

RHA (Patient’s residence) Total
Brandon 7
Burntwood/Churchill 57
Interlake 3
Nor-Man 12
North Eastman 3
Parkland 1
South Eastman 1
Winnipeg 68

Total 152

– 30 –

NationTalk Partners & Sponsors Learn More