Swine flu breaks out at second Maryland fair
Health officials have detected swine flu in 11 pigs in a second Maryland county fair within a week
Recent tests have shown that 11 pigs from The Great Frederick Fair in Maryland were infected with influenza A; this is the second fair within a week to experience the circumstances of swine flu. All hogs in the infected area will be quarantined for seven days following the last signs of illness.
Charles County Fair had issues with the swine flu not only affecting hogs but also humans. Seven people were treated for swine flu after attending the fair. Maryland’s health department said that the infected people had contact with five hog that were infected. None of the individuals had to hospitalized.
There have only been about 400 cases of swine flu reported in humans since 2005, “which means that it’s really unusual,” said Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infections Diseases at the National Institutes of Health, in an interview with WTOP.
As a further preventative measure, the Maryland secretary of agriculture canceled swine exhibits at two more county fairs. Further testing is being done to see if the cases in Frederick and Charles counties are somehow related.
There have been no reports of human health issues from Frederick County at this time. The health department advised people who come down with flu symptoms and had contact with county fair hogs to see their doctor.
Not the first county fair outbreak
Two county fairs in Ohio had swine influenza outbreaks earlier this summer. The affected fairs were the Franklin County Fair in Hilliard, Ohio, and the Clinton County Fair in Wilmington, Ohio. The drive time between the two fairs is just over an hour.
Franklin County's fair removed 50 hogs after two pigs developed influenza. Clinton County was hit on a much bigger scale; after two hogs tested positive for influenza, 300 more were required to undergo a mandatory slaughter.