Why the concern about H7N9?
This influenza A (H7N9) virus is one subgroup among the large group of H7 viruses. Although some H7 viruses (H7N2, H7N3 and H7N7) have occasionally been found to infect humans, until now H7N9 infections have not been reported in humans. And as such a new virus, it has the potential to spark a pandemic due to the lack of immunity in the human population.
Wednesday April 24, 2013 the World Health Organization warned H7N9 is one of the most deadly strains of influenza seen thus far and appears to be more easily transmitted than H5N1.Hong Kong offcials have suggested H7N9 is more lethal than SARS of 2005. Genetic sequencing of the virus indicates this virus has adapted to infect humans, grow and bind to mammalian cells. As such this virus is now able to grow in lower temperature of the human body.
For additional information see the Extension Disaster Education
Prepare for a Disaster
Get a Kit. Make a Plan. Be informed. These are the steps to be prepared for any disaster natural or man-made. As you plan consider
whether you will be sheltering in place, evacuating or possibly doing both! Severe spring/summer weather dictates plans should be made for both sheltering in place and also evacuation. The primary concern in planning for severe summer weather is preparing for the potential loss of power, air conditioning, and/or communication systems.
Get a Kit: Build an emergency kit tailored for you and your family by going to bReadySD.com. You will be able to build your kit for 3 days or weeks, with food, water, and supplies needed for your family based on age of each family member. This link will also help you budget for creating a comprehensive kit.
1. Never use generators, grills, camp stoves, or other gasoline, propane, natural gas, or charcoal-burning devices inside your home, basement, garage, or camper—or even outside near an open window.
2. Do not try to use bottles gas in natural gas appliances unless you have converted the appliances for such use. Also, flues and piping suitable for gas burning appliances may be unsafe for use with higher-temperature oil, coal or wood smoke.
3. If you lose power be aware of food safety issues and when in doubt throw out.
Make a Plan. It is particularly important regardless of the disaster you have a communication plan in place. Plan a meeting place and complete a plan (at bReadySD.com) to have contact numbers for family and friends locally and out-of-state.
Be Informed. Learn the severe spring/summer weather terms and a few tips to prepare your car and home at ready.gov.
Taking a few minutes now to prepare may save your life.
2012 West Nile Virus Season
West Nile Virus is here to stay! In the recent years of cool springs and/or delayed warm weather we have had mild years relative to the number of positive mosquito pools tested and human cases reported. The warm spring of 2012 may change this pattern and heighten our need to be vigilant and take personal precautions to reduce risk.
The nuisance mosquito Aedes vexans has wintered over and the population ready to bloom with the moisture as we have seen in recent weeks. These mosquitoes are not efficient carriers of West Nile Virus, but because they are pesky they are good reminders for us to clean-up mosquito breeding areas, wear long sleeve clothing, use repellents, and/or limit outdoor activities at dawn and dusk.
On the other hand the Culex tarsalis mosquitoes are efficient carriers of West Nile Virus and they could potentially create a significant season for West Nile Virus, but we will not know this for several weeks. These mosquitoes need time to breed and for the virus to be "amplified" before we can assess the threat to human health. The greatest risk for contracting West Nile Virus is from July 4 through October 1. Communities have begun surveillance programs for targeted spraying and as the season progresses we will update this page relative to the potential threat and tips for personal safety.