200,000 treatment courses for Swine Flu headed to Wash. State - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

200,000 treatment courses for Swine Flu headed to Wash. State

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SPOKANE, Wash. - Approximately 200,000 treatment courses for the spreading swine flu are headed to Washington State, according to Mary Selecky, the state secretary of health.

The news comes hours after officials at the White House declared a Public Health Emergency to deal with the virus.

Federal authorities said the declaration would allow easier access to flu tests and medications.

Zero people have tested positive for the virus in Washington State; however, health administrators say they are trying to be proactive because the virus continues to spread.

Authorities have confirmed 20 cases across 5 US states.

Dr. Tony Marfin, state epidemiologist with the Washington State Department of Health said the cases in the United States have been much more mild and resulted in full recovery-- a contrast to Mexico where more than 80 people have died from the virus.

Selecky said the 200,000 treatments will come from the Strategic National Stockpile, a batch of treatments not available to the general public.

The Department of Health is asking doctors to watch for patients who have traveled to Mexico and exhibit flu-like symptoms.

Health administrators across the United States are asking patients with fevers and coughs to stay home.

Anthony Gomes
Reporter, KHQ Local News

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