Minnie Hamilton Health System is closely monitoring the federal alert system because of recent news of a possible Swine Flu outbreak in the United States.

Minnie Hamilton Health System will assist all members of our community to get the care that is needed, if and when it is needed. As this event evolves, it is critical that all Calhoun County and all WV residents do their part to prepare, stay calm, and work together to prevent the spread of this illness.

The Flu is passed by direct contact, and coughing and sneezing. This is the time that all family members should be reminded of the need for good hand washing (soap up, scrub and count to ten slowly, before rinsing) the practice of covering mouths and nose when coughing-sneezing (preferably with a tissue) and the proper disposal of contaminated paper products.

Just like during the annual Flu season, please stay home if you or family members are not feeling well - do not go to work or school or any public gathering, sick.

Please take some time to get a few things in order, such as: phone and address information of family members, updated medication lists and refilled prescriptions, stock of over the counter medicines such as cough medicine, Tylenol (adult and children's, Do not administer aspirin) stock supplies of non-perishable foods and juices. Make certain that you have an adequate supply of bleach, large trash bags, and paper supplies.

Minnie Hamilton Health System offers highly skilled medical care and access to necessary medications should you need them. If you have been in contact with individuals or traveled from Mexico or Southern California within the last 7 days and are experiencing Flu-like symptoms, please call Minnie Hamilton Health System 304-354-9244. The staff will provide you with information for how to access the care that you or your family needs - while at the same time minimizing the spread of infection.

There is plenty to do to prepare, so if you have neighbors that need help getting things together, reach out. It is best to be prepared, or help in the preparation, than to be scared or worried. Minnie Hamilton Health System is there to assist, answer questions, and work with you through this challenging time.

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