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WMU implementing pandemic preparedness plan

April 30, 2009

KALAMAZOO--The World Health Organization has raised the pandemic alert level to 5--the second-highest level in its warning system--and is urging nations to implement pandemic preparedness plans to combat the 2009 H1N1 virus, also known as swine flu.

Western Michigan University has been developing a pandemic preparedness plan for nearly three years and is implementing basic parts of the plan.

  • Sindecuse Health Center has hand sanitizers and paper masks for patients who come to the center with flu symptoms.
  • Health center staff have set up a triage system to separate patients with flu symptoms from those without symptoms.
  • Sindecuse staff are prepared to perform rapid tests for influenza.
  • Students, faculty and staff are being reminded of basic precautions such as hand-washing that will help prevent or slow the spread of influenza.

WMU is between sessions this week. Its first summer session begins Monday, May 4.

WMU students return from Mexico

All but one of the 18 WMU students in the study abroad program at the University of Queretaro in Mexico have returned to the United States, with the largest group of 15 arriving in Kalamazoo April 29. The remaining student is expected to return tomorrow, May 1.

While none of the returning students exhibit any flu symptoms, all have been asked to remain at home for one week, until the flu incubation period has passed. This precaution exceeds the Centers for Disease Control recommendations for travelers returning from Mexico.

Latest recommendations available online

Dr. Lisa Marshall, medical director at Sindecuse Health Center, urges members of the University community to stay informed about the outbreaks, symptoms and basic daily precautions everyone should take to avoid any strain of flu.

CDC information on H1N1 (swine flu)

CDC travel warnings and restrictions

Sindecuse Health Center recommendations

WMU Study Abroad updates

Related articles
WMU suspends Mexican study abroad program
WMU monitoring swine flu outbreak

Media contact: Cheryl Roland, (269) 387-8400, cheryl.roland@wmich.edu

WMU News
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