At this time, an outbreak of novel H1N1 flu is occurring in the United States and internationally. While CDC is taking action to control the outbreak, communities, businesses, places of worship1, schools, and individuals can also take steps to slow the spread.
Novel H1N1 flu spreads when sick people cough or sneeze flu germs2 onto others or onto surfaces that someone else may touch. Whether you're at home, work, school, or running daily errands3, you can help prevent the flu by washing your hands often with soap and water and avoiding contact with sick people.
Sometimes you won't have access to running water, so you might want to carry hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 percent alcohol4. If you can, it's best to use soap and water because hand sanitizer doesn't remove soil and other material that might be on your hands.
0If you're diagnosed5 with novel H1N1 flu, it's important to stay away from others. Stay home from work or school to keep from spreading the virus. Remember, you may be able to infect others beginning one day before symptoms develop and up to seven or more days after becoming sick. That means you may be able to pass on the flu to someone else before you know you're sick and while you're sick.
CDC also recommends that you cover your mouth and nose with a tissue6 when you cough or sneeze. Put your used tissue in the trash immediately.