H1N1 flu closes five South Bay schools

April 30, 2009 12:00:00 AM PDT
There is a growing concern about swine flu and a rush to be checked by a doctor. Bay Area hospitals are pleading with the public to stay away from the E.R. unless they really need to be there.

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The number of infected people of H1N1 influenza in California is growing. There are now six schools closed in the bay area, five of them in Santa Clara County.

The new schools closed are Rucker Elementary School in Gilroy, Delphi Academy and Elan Esprit in Santa Clara and Challenger Elementary in the Strawberry Park section of San Jose.

Branham High School was shut down on Wednesday.

Santa Clara's County Public Health Department said the number of probable H1N1 cases has gone from four to six.

"Our case number five is a 5-year-old who resides in Santa Clara and is a male, and our sixth case is also a youngster, a 6-year-old male who is also a Santa Clara resident," said Dr. Marty Fenstersheib from the Santa Clara County Health Department.

Five schools in Santa Clara County are now closed, and it is affecting thousands of students. But there are no plans to cancel any large public events for Friday's May Day march for immigration rights.

Organizers say they hope the flu scare doesn't keep people away.

"It might cause some confusion that folks might not go to May 1st because of the swine flu, but I think that folks could see over there and if they want immigration reform they will show up," said march organizer Cesar Juarez.

The repeated message for all is for anyone who is showing flu-like symptoms to stay home from school, work or large gatherings which include Friday's march.

"If you are feeling a little bit sick please don't come to the march because we would like to be safe," said march participant Julie Juillen.

The county health officers said while the number of flu cases is increasing, there is no reason for panic.

"That the severity of this particular illness is minimal, that everybody has recovered all of the cases and it's been the same issue all across the country," said

Santa Clara County has tested 99 samples, six are probable and one is highly suspect, which is why Rucker Elementary School in Gilroy was closed. A number of students there displayed flu-like symptoms.

SWINE FLU: Resources, info, links & answers
SWINE FLU: The latest headlines
SWINE FLU: Map of probable Bay Area swine flu cases

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