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Updated 10:00 AM April 27, 2009

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  From the Record Update
An important message about swine flu from Provost Sullivan and Chief Health Officer Dr. Winfield to the university community

En español, Importante mensaje sobre la gripe porcina

We write to you today to report that university health officials are closely monitoring the growing number of reported cases of swine flu in the United States.

As you may know, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a public health emergency alert Sunday. The alert was issued as a precaution and the university’s actions are consistent with those measures. There is no imminent danger to the health of the university community.

While Mexico remains the epicenter of the outbreak, cases have been reported in other countries and in at least six states in the United States. Twenty cases of swine flu had been confirmed in the U.S. by Sunday night.

This morning, state public health officials said there was one probable case in Michigan, that of a 34-year-old woman in Livingston County who had recently traveled to the Mexican border area in Texas.

With that backdrop, we wanted to report to you today on the steps being taken that we believe will help safeguard the health of all members of the university community.

• Health care providers within the Health System and at University Health Service will heighten their awareness of patients with flu-like symptoms.

• We are recommending, for the time being, that faculty, students and staff not travel to Mexico.

• If travel to Mexico is essential, we recommend taking a surgical mask for each day in the country along with a supply of hand sanitizer and the proper dosage of Tamiflu. Masks and sanitizer can be purchased at most drugstores; Tamiflu must be obtained through a health care provider and used only if symptoms develop.

• If you experience flu-like symptoms — a fever of 100 F (37.8 C) or higher, running nose, cough, respiratory congestion — we ask you to stay home from work or school to keep from making others ill.

• If, in addition to having flu-like symptoms, you have traveled to Mexico in the last seven days or have been exposed to someone with the flu in the last seven days, we recommend that you seek treatment from your regular health care provider.

We want you to know that university health care officials will be continually monitoring this situation in the days ahead. We will remain in contact with the CDC and the World Health Organization and will make you aware of all appropriate health cautions and instructions.

Additional information is available from the CDC at this Web site:

Updates will be posted on the university’s home page:

Further details on the university’s preparations for health emergencies are available at this Web site:

For questions specifically related to university travel please e-mail:

Teresa A. Sullivan, provost and executive vice president for academic affairs
Dr. Robert A. Winfield, chief health officer

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