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HISCG acknowledge Scottish Government approach to swine flu (03/07/09)
Issued by HISCG
Members of the Highlands and Islands Strategic Co-ordinating Group (HISCG) acknowledge the Scottish Government's announcement yesterday regarding the change in approach from a containment to treatment phase.
Interim Director of Public Health Dr Ken Oates NHS Highland said: "There are currently only 4 confirmed cases in the Highland Council area and none in the Islands. The cases are isolated and all travel related. There is no evidence at the present time of widespread community transmission of the virus in this region. However, we anticipate that the H1N1 virus will become more widespread here as in the rest of the UK over the coming weeks and months.
"The change in our approach to this illness means it will now be treated much more like the flu outbreaks that we experience every winter and only those who are clinically unwell will be offered Tamiflu. It is important to remember that the vast majority of people affected across the UK experience only mild symptoms and completely recover. We can still all help to limit the spread of infection by simple hygiene measures - remembering to wash our hands, and using a tissue when coughing or sneezing."
Chair of HISCG, Chief Constable Ian Latimer added: "HISCG members will continue to support our NHS colleagues and maintain a close eye on the unfolding picture of the H1N1 virus.The shift in national emphasis will allow the NHS to concentrate on focussing their efforts on clinical care of patients, whilst all agencies will need to continue to ensure they are well prepared for any associated impact such as a potential increased workplace absenteeism over the autumn and winter months."
The next planned HISCG meeting is 26 August.