Doctor Presents Info about H1N1 to Alice Area Leaders

Doctors and community leaders gathered at Christus Spohn Hospital in Alice to learn about the H1N1 virus. Unlike big cities or even Corpus Christi, Jim Wells County has no health district. Area leaders get their guidance on health issues from the Texas Health Department based in Harlingen, which is more than 100 miles away.

So today, Dr. Earl Matthew, who is an Infectious Disease Doctor in Corpus Christi at Christus Spohn Hospital, gave a 90 minute presentation during a lunchtime meeting for Alice City leaders, Jim Wells County leaders and area doctors.

Dr. Matthew talked about symptoms to recognize for the H1N1, the vaccine that is coming out and prevention methods, such as covering your cough and washing your hands. He also gave tips on how to prevent the spread of the virus in city and county offices.

“We discussed how it’s transmitted, basically through the cough and collection of wet droplets and on our hands,” said Dr. Mathew.

County leaders, like Sheriff Oscar Lopez, walked away with vital information to share with his staff.

“They taught us how to take care of ourselves, take care of other people from getting this virus. If we all do our work together, it will be fine,” said Sheriff Lopez.

Infectious Disease doctor report getting the vaccine will protect you from getting the virus. They claim if you get the shot, it’s about 85 percent chance you won’t come down with the swine flu.

“The vaccine is coming out as quickly to this H1N1 as we’ve ever produced and it will be widely distributed as it becomes available,” Dr. Mathew said.

All the information was taken in by a handful of leaders. Many will take back the information to their employees who work with the public.

“I think it’s important that we continue to protect the people who have constant contact with the public and to be able to give them information how to protect themselves,” said Dr. Rito Silva, who is the Alice Mayor.

–Manuel De La Rosa, KIII-TV Reporter, mannydelarosa@yahoo.com

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