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WHO pandemic designation changes little for provincial officials - Metro US

WHO pandemic designation changes little for provincial officials

The World Health Organization has raised its pandemic flu alert Thursday to Level 6 — the highest possible.

But authorities in Nova Scotia said there is no need to change the way they deal with Influenza A (H1N1), also known as swine flu.

Chief public health officer Robert Strang said they have already been treating swine flu as a pandemic, and the cases in Nova Scotia have so far been treated like normal flu with closer monitoring.

Strang said the government will know if the disease turns serious and are preparing emergency protocols if that happens.

“We need to prepare Nova Scotia’s health care system for the possibility we will see more and more serious cases of the virus,” he said. “We need to be prepared for the strain this could place on the health care system,.”

There have been 79 confirmed cases of H1N1 in Nova Scotia, and many more untested cases. One person was recently hospitalized with the illness but is now recovering.

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