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Interview with Dr. Evan T. Bell About H1N1

Dave Kurten:
  Time for the Medical Minute, brought to you by Mt. Nittany Medical Center on 95.3, 3WZ.  Our guest today is Dr. Evan T. Bell from Centre Medical and Surgical Associates thanks for spending some time with us today. 

Dr. Evan T. Bell:  Thank you.

Dave Kurten:  We’re going to talk today about the H1N1 Virus, more commonly known as Swine Flu, tell us exactly what the Swine Flu is.

Dr. Evan T. Bell:  Well, Swine Flu has been renamed H1N1 or novel H1N1 influenza.  It is a strain of influenza like we’ve seen throughout the years.  It is just different in that it is circulating through a different age group and at a different time of year and seems to be quite contagious and spreading rapidly around the world. 

Dave Kurten:  Now, we’ve heard a lot about a possible vaccine, when will that be available?

Dr. Evan T. Bell:  It looks like in the beginning of October, the first several weeks of October; we should be seeing the first batches arrive to the community.

Dave Kurten:  And who should be vaccinated against H1N1?

Dr. Evan T. Bell:  Well, they’re prioritizing the recipients of the vaccines and the most important people to vaccinate will be pregnant women, healthcare workers or anybody who is in contact with the community on a regular basis, and children up to the age of 24, as well as people under the age of 64 who have chronic medical conditions. 

Dave Kurten:  How important is it to visit a doctor in the early stages of H1N1?

Dr. Evan T. Bell:  The vast majority of people who will get H1N1 flu will not be sick enough to require a visit to the doctor.  If either the child or the adult is showing signs of more serious illness, with problems breathing or changes in mentation, a fever that is high and will not come down, they should go visit the doctor or if they have underlying medical conditions that might make the influenza a more difficult illness.

Dave Kurten:  What are some of the ways that people can help prevent H1N1?

Dr. Evan T. Bell:  Well, the most important thing is, the most important things I should say, would be: 1. staying home if you’re sick with an illness that’s compatible to influenza, so that you don’t spread it to other individuals.  If you are coughing, or sneezing, try your best to cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve, dispose of tissues properly and the most important thing is to wash your hands frequently throughout the day.

Dave Kurten:  Where can the community find out more information about H1N1?

Dr. Evan T. Bell:  Locally, you can contact Mt. Nittany Hospital, they have a website MtNittany.org, they also have a hotline phone number which is 814-231-7177, or you can also go to the CDC Website which is Flu.gov to get the latest information.

Dave Kurten:  Dr. Evan T. Bell, from Centre Medical and Surgical Associates, thanks for joining us today.

Dr. Evan T. Bell:  My  pleasure, thank you.

Dave Kurten:  This has been the 3WZ Medical Minute, brought to you by Mt. Nittany Medical Center on 95.3, 3WZ.


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