Page last updated at 06:05 GMT, Wednesday, 12 August 2009 07:05 UK

Swine flu advice drive launched

Advice leaflet
Homes in Wales have already been leafleted with advice about swine flu

A publicity campaign to remind people of what they should do if they have swine flu symptoms has been launched.

The press and radio campaign aims to tell people how to cut the risk of catching or spreading the illness.

The adverts also aim to reassure visitors about where they can get help if they feel ill.

The spread of the virus in Wales has been slower than in England and the number of people contacting their GP with flu-like symptoms is falling.

Figures released by the National Public Health Service for Wales on Monday suggested around 2,211 people in Wales with flu-like symptoms had contacted their GPs in the previous seven-day accounting period.

Not all of these people would have swine flu and not everyone with flu-like symptoms would have contacted their GP.

A total of 32 people with swine flu have been admitted to hospital, 26 of whom have been discharged.

There have been 99 laboratory confirmed cases in Wales, with two new cases being an eight-year-old girl from Swansea who has been admitted to hospital and a one-year-old child from Cardiff who is recovering at home.

If you have symptoms, stay home and check out the symptoms on NHS Direct Wales
Or phone the swine flu information line on 0800 1 513 513 for recorded advice and information
Most people will not need further advice and support and can self-medicate at home with rest, plenty of fluid and paracetamol
If you are in an at risk group or your symptoms get worse call your GP
If people contact the National Pandemic Flu Service - either the website or the call centre - they will be directed to contact their GP
Source: Welsh Assembly Government

Wales, along with Scotland and Northern Ireland, is not joining the National Pandemic Flu Service, which has been introduced in England in response to operational pressure.

The publicity campaign follows leaflets being sent to every home in Wales earlier this year.

Wales' deputy chief medical officer, Dr Jane Wilkinson, said: "We believe that people prefer to deal with the services that they know and are comfortable with.

"For this reason, we are strengthening existing services in the same way as Scotland did to manage the increase they have already seen, such as training more call handlers for NHS Direct Wales.

"However, because the number of cases has dropped, it is important to ensure people do not become complacent and continue to be vigilant in an effort to reduce the spread of swine flu.

"The NHS has managed extremely well so far in Wales and we have robust plans in place to manage to situation should the number of cases increase again.

"The campaign highlights that if we all play our part, we will be able to manage swine flu without causing undue pressure on the NHS."

NHS Direct can be contacted on 0845 4647.

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