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Doctor office visits increased slightly

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Two H1N1-related deaths were reported in the last week in N.M.

By Special to the Monitor

Influenza-Like Illness

Visits to healthcare providers for influenza-like illness increased slightly from 4.9 percent last week to 5.4 percent this week. The Department tracks influenza-like illness, which is defined as fever and either cough and/or sore throat, at 26 clinics throughout the state.

Influenza-like illness is the best indicator of flu activity in the state.  H1N1 influenza is still the predominant strain of flu in New Mexico at this time. All positive flu tests are presumed to be novel H1N1 influenza.

The severity of illness due to novel H1N1 influenza has not changed nationally or in New Mexico from the spring.

Deaths

The Department of Health is reporting two H1N1-related deaths in the last week in New Mexico. The latest deaths are a 78-year-old female from Bernalillo County with chronic medical conditions and a 59-year-old female from Luna County whose medical history has not been determined yet.

There have been 42 deaths related to H1N1 influenza in the state. Information about the other deaths is listed on the Department’s H1N1 website at: www.nmhealth.org/H1N1.

Vaccine Information

The Department of Health has ordered 403,520 doses of nasal and injectable H1N1 vaccine. Vaccine is arriving in small amounts and is being distributed to providers and public health offices statewide.

The Department of Health is encouraging people in the following current H1N1 vaccination priority groups to get vaccinated as soon as possible: pregnant women, household members/caretakers of infants younger than 6 months old, children 6 to 59 months of age, children and adults 5 to 64 years of age with certain chronic health conditions that increase their risk of complications from influenza and healthcare workers and emergency medical service personnel with direct patient care.

 

The Department of Health is encouraging people in the current priority group to call their primary healthcare providers first to ask if they are providing the novel H1N1 vaccine. People in the priority groups without insurance or a healthcare provider, or whose provider will not offer the H1N1 vaccine, can get the vaccine from a local public health office.  Call your local public health office first to check the availability of H1N1 vaccine. Public health offices are listed in the phonebook’s blue pages under state government or online at www.nmhealth.org.

Vaccine Ordered

by County

The following is a total amount of H1N1 vaccine that has been ordered for each county as of Dec. 2:  Bernalillo (133,910), Catron (370), Chaves (16,910), Cibola (6,780), Colfax (2,520), Curry (9,070), DeBaca (260), Doña Ana (41,620), Eddy, (9,350), Grant (7,280), Guadalupe (670), Harding (20), Hidalgo (460), Lea (12,020), Lincoln (3,270), Los Alamos (4,010), Luna (5,320), McKinley (17,610), Mora (600), Otero (11,250), Quay (1,870), Rio Arriba (9,415), Roosevelt (3,190), San Juan (26,290), San Miguel (5,610), Sandoval (18,830), Santa Fe (27,945), Sierra (2,660), Socorro (4,410), Taos (4,370), Torrance (3,290), Union (630), Valencia (11,710).

Hospitalizations

by County

So far, there have been 948 hospitalizations related to novel H1N1 influenza this year. This week the Department of Health is reporting two new hospitalizations, both from Bernalillo County.  The hospitalizations by county are as follows: Bernalillo County (236), Catron County (2), Chaves County (15), Cibola County (12), Colfax County (21), Curry County (57), Doña Ana County (113), Eddy County (28), Grant County (12), Guadalupe County (1), Lea County (26), Lincoln County (6), Los Alamos County (4), Luna County (13), McKinley County (70), Mora County (1), Otero County (27), Quay (6), Rio Arriba County (19), Roosevelt County (9), San Juan County (56), San Miguel County (6), Sandoval County (40), Santa Fe County (46), Sierra County (11), Socorro County (15), Taos County (21), Torrance County (2), Union County (1), Valencia County (32) and 40 cases where residence has not yet been determined.