About Amy Umble:
Amy Umble is health reporter for The Free Lance-Star

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H1N1 flu update from Dr. Remley

Dr. Karen Remley, state health commissioner, sent doctors a swine flu update Friday. Her “Dear Flucolleague” e-mail included these points:

·         The level of H1N1 activity in Virginia moved to "widespread" from “regional” last week. This means that the virus is present in more than three of Virginia’s five regions. The Fredericksburg area within the Northwest Region is one of the affected areas. “This is the highest level of activity and is unusual for this time of year,” she wrote.

·         For those with severe symptoms, she recommends antiviral medications, to be started within 48 hours of the onset of symptoms.

·          The rapid flu test is not reliable at either excluding or detecting H1N1, she said. “Clinical diagnosis is an important component of care,” she said.

·         More than 2,600 sites have pre-registered in Virginia to administer the H1N1 vaccine.

An FAQ from the Health Department can be found here.