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Local Health Care Providers Considering Emergency Swine Flu Declaration

October 29, 2009


Emergency Declarations are being considered by health care providers in Chelan and Douglas Counties in connection with the h1n1 flu. They’re not overwhelmed yet but Public Health officials say such a declaration could help the health care system deal with the pandemic in the event hospitals and outpatient clinics become strained later during the flu season. Mary Small with the Chelan/Douglas County Health District explains. Small says Such declarations do not mean that the severity of the flu is getting worse – it isn’t. Instead, declarations provide legal support for special measures taken by health care providers – for example, declarations would make it possible for a hospital to set up an off-site triage center for flu patients, without violating Federal regulations which normally make that difficult. Additional providers, such as some Emergency Medical Technicians, would be able to give flu shots.