Shelters trying to protect the homeless from Swine Flu - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Shelters trying to protect the homeless from Swine Flu

SPOKANE, Wash. - Health professionals at the Center for Disease Control are concerned the swine flu could slam the homeless population.  Due to poor health, homeless are already vulnerable to the flu virus.

Knowing this, the Union Gospel Mission leaders in Spokane have prepared a plan to prevent a flu outbreak.  At the shelter, 150 men sleep overnight in dorms with 20 to a room.  It's these confined places that have the administration bringing out a plan for attack. The plan calls for meticulous cleaning from top to bottom.

Each night men are required to shower and put on clean pajamas while their daytime clothes are washed.  The sick are isolated in one room or section of the building and the staff are taught how to recognize symptoms.

"From simple things from what's the difference from a cold and the flu. So we will be posting this and watching people accordingly, and if we have to we'll send them to the hospital," said Dean Whisler with Union Gospel Mission.

Volunteer nurses and doctors are also on hand on a weekly basis, to give the much needed medical attention.

On Tuesday, September 6th, the Union Gospel Mission will be giving away free flu vaccines to the first 100 homeless people starting at 9:00 a.m.

Leaders are trying to get the swine flu vaccines as well.

Kevin Randall
KHQ Reporter

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