Health officials in India reported a total of 4571 cases of swine flu (H1N1) nationwide between January 1 and late January. According to reports, at least 169 associated deaths have been confirmed. The most affected states include Rajasthan and Maharashtra. Hospitals in affected areas have been placed on high alert. Additional cases are likely to be reported in the coming weeks.
H1N1 is a contagious virus that can spread from human to human. Symptoms of the disease include a sudden onset of high fever, aching muscles, headache, and severe dizziness. Individuals most at risk include pregnant women, children, elderly persons, and otherwise immunocompromised people. In 2015, India experienced its worst outbreak of swine flu disease with over 42,500 cases reported, nearly 3000 of which proved fatal.
All those present in India are advised to take basic hygienic measures to reduce their risk of contracting the flu (e.g. frequent handwashing) and to consider getting vaccinated. People developing the above symptoms are advised to seek medical attention.
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