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Seven more cases of swine flu reported in Southern Nevada

The Southern Nevada Health District reported seven more confirmed cases of swine flu today, but public health officials noted that the children and adults who had the virus have recovered.

That brings the total of confirmed swine flu cases in Clark County to nine, with 16 statewide, according to Stephanie Bethel, a spokeswoman for the health district.

Five school age children — a 4-year-old girl, a 12-year-old girl, a 13-year-old boy and two 16-year-old boys — were among the recently confirmed cases.

Bethel said each child had a mild illness and that according to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines, there was no need for school closures.

Though health officials would not release the names of the children or schools they attended, the state’s health officer, Dr. Mary Guinan, said Friday that whenever school age children with the virus are involved, public health officials meet with school officials to determine whether the virus is spreading.

If there are not secondary flu cases among schoolchildren, she said there is no need to close schools down.

Clark County School District spokesman Michael Rodriguez said today that he didn’t know how many schools were affected, but that it was more than one.

He also said the district has no plans to close any schools, but it does plan Tuesday to release information in letters to parents at the affected schools.

The letters will not identify the infected students, but will say there has been a confirmed case of a student with swine flu. They also will remind families to take necessary precautions, such as washing hands frequently and letting children stay home if sick.

Rodriquez said custodians clean and disinfect schools every day.

None of the seven new flu victims had to be hospitalized.

A 40-year-old woman, who was in contact with the 4-year-old girl, also had a mild form of the illness and recovered. A 24-year-old man also had a mild case of the swine flu and recovered.

Clark County’s first reported confirmed cases of the H1N1 virus involved an 11-year-old boy who has recovered and a 39-year-old woman who was hospitalized in critical condition but has since been released and is recovering at home.

Bethel said there are six additional probable swine flu cases in Clark County awaiting confirmation testing.

 

Review-Journal writer James Haug contributed to this report. Contact reporter Paul Harasim at pharasim@reviewjournal.com or 702-387-2908.

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