Health officials warn college students to be wary of H1N1 flu strain

Friday, January 10, 2014
By Paul Martin

By Robin Erb
Freep.com
January 9, 2014

As Michigan’s college students head back to the classroom, they might find something more than long lectures and exams waiting.

The H1N1 flu virus, already blamed for hundreds of hospitalizations and more than a half-dozen deaths across Michigan, can find an easy foothold in the close quarters of a college campus, said Dr. Matt Davis, chief medical executive for the Michigan Department of Community Health and a professor at the University of Michigan.

It’s particularly worrisome to public health officials because, unlike other flu strains, H1N1 is known to cause unusually severe symptoms in healthy people in their 20s, 30s, and 40s — those who normally aren’t as susceptible to the flu as the very young, the old and those with health conditions.

And college kids aren’t known for the best health choices.

“They’re kids on their own for the first time,” said Dr. Matthew Sims, an infectious diseases researcher at Beaumont Hospital, Royal Oak. “They’re crowding together. They’re partying. They’re getting to know each other for the first time very well.”

The Rest…HERE

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