At least 12 H1N1 cases in the FHHR: Vooght

Nathan Liewicki
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The H1N1 virus has spread to the Five Hills Health Region (FHHR), chief medical officer Dr. Mark Vooght confirmed Tuesday.

Dr. Mark Vooght, the chief medical officer for the Five Hills Health Region, said Tuesday there are at least a dozen confirmed cases of the H1N1 virus in the region. 

The H1N1 virus has spread to the Five Hills Health Region (FHHR), chief medical officer Dr. Mark Vooght confirmed Tuesday.

“We have had about a dozen cases – at least – and everyday we get a few more in our health region,” Vooght said.

Of the known H1N1 cases, some have been severe and resulted in people being hospitalized. Others were discovered as a result of swabs made on patients that came back positive.

Vooght also acknowledged there are other cases of the virus that are running around the health region.

“We know there's probably 10 cases that go around in the community – at least – for every one case that is proven a positive test,” he said.

The most at-risk people remain children aged six-months to 59-months, women at any stage of pregnancy, including those who have given birth in the last four weeks, and immunocompomised individuals.

People who are receiving chemotherapy for cancer treatment, are on dialysis and have recently undergone a transplant are examples of those who fall under the spectrum of immunocompomised individuals.

Any person in the three high-risk groups will have an opportunity to be immunized as early as Thursday.

That is because according to Vooght, a little more than 1,000 doses of the vaccine – injectable and nasal spray – are expected to arrive in the FHHR on Wednesday.

Unfortunately for the majority of people who have not yet received an immunization, their wait for the injection or nasal spray vaccination will continue.

“At this stage the general public is not to receive the vaccine,” said Vooght. “There is no surplus vaccine to give the general public. We are reserving it for those most at risk.”

Those who qualify for the vaccination will only be given the immunization after booking an appointment with their local public health office, as there will be no more mass flu clinics.

People in the Moose Jaw area can book their vaccination appointments by calling 306-691-1500.

Nathan Liewicki can be reached at 306-691-1256 or follow him on Twitter @liewicks

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