UPDATE: Tennessee officials nearly sure of the state's first swine flu case

By: Nick Bona Email
By: Nick Bona Email
Tennessee health officials say the state may be dealing with its first case of swine influenza.

Gov. Phil Bredesen tells the media that Tennessee likely has its first case of swine flu. A culture from a Williamson County child has been sent to the Centers for Disease Control to confirm the state's test.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) – Tennessee health officials say the state may be dealing with its first case of swine influenza.

Gov. Phil Bredesen addressed the media on Wednesday night at the state capital, confirming what was known so far.

"We wanted to let you know that we have the first probable case of N1H1 Influenza, which people call the swine flu,” he said. “To be clear this is not a confirmed case, but it has gone to the CDC for confirmation.”

Earlier in the week, the state announced that it expected mild cases of the swine flu to pop up in Tennessee. Ten cultures from potential cases were in the process being tested on Tuesday.

One of those cultures is likely the same one health officials believe will become a confirmed swine flu case. It involves a Williamson County child who attends Harding Academy in Davidson County. The state says it was flagged when the child’s doctor submitted a blood sample to the state health department to be analyzed.

“The test we preformed here is at least 95.5 percent accurate,” said Gov. Bredesen. “I think it's at least a safe bet to say that this will become ultimately a confirmed case.”

Health Commissioner Susan R. Cooper also addressed the gathering, explaining the state already has a plan in place to deal with a pandemic if one occurs.

"We're not surprised by this development,” Cooper said. “We have prepared and we have practiced, and we stand fully ready to take care of the residents of our state.”

State officials have not released the name, age and sex of the patient, but do confirm they have a mild case of the sickness and are recovering at home. A blood sample has been sent to the Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta. They expected to receive the results within 24 to 48 hours after the press conference.

Harding Academy is located in Nashville and currently enrolls 490 students from Kindergartner through the eight grades. It will remain closed for at least seven days. Meanwhile, the health department says anyone who has come in contact with the child and begins to feel flu like symptoms should see a doctor.

(The Associated Press contributed to this report)

You must be logged in to post comments.

Password (case sensitive):
Remember Me:

Read Comments

Join the Conversation!

While WVLT allows comments on articles, we ask that you respect the online community. Comments may be removed at any time for violations including:

  • Obscenity, profanity, vulgarity, racism, violent descriptions, name-calling or personal attacks.
  • Abuse of multiple accounts.
  • Off-topic comments.

Comments may be checked for inappropriate content or rule violation, but the station is under no legal obligation to monitor or remove comments. If you believe a comment violates the above rules, please use the Flagging Tool to alert a Moderator. 
Flagging does not guarantee removal.

  • by ryen Location: palau micronesia on Jun 5, 2009 at 03:55 AM
    im filipina im very worried the situation here in palau , that theres no any facilities to detect the sign of swine flu, that everyday maybe let say 50 of tourist coming here & its very small island theres no ways the goverment put a detection machine in airport to check if those tourist had a swine flu to avoid virus, and theres no any good facilities in the hospital to detect if theres case already of swine flu here in palau & i have some friends already got sick & we dnt knw if they had already swine flu coz they had fever, diarhea, vomiting, & what i search are those signs of swine flu, im were very worried about the situation here, im trying to find ways to contact the dept. of health in phils to help filipinos here, espeacially right now that this island are more tourist coming & its very small island.
  • by keira Location: Nashville on Apr 30, 2009 at 09:51 PM
    Here is an interesting article about Swine flu: http://www.nashville247.tv/News/Health/2009/04/30/Swine-Flu-sickens-2-Tennessee/1241121653.html
  • by Annie Location: Crockett County on Apr 30, 2009 at 11:43 AM
    We aren't getting as much information from the Tennessee Health Dept concerning this Swine Flu virus. We don't understand why they should do this, it's better to keep the public informed rather than kept in the dark. That's how mis-information and rumors are spread. When we know the facts, it's more than likely that people will use wisdom and use the knowledge and information, so as to NOT panic!! We can't always believe what we hear on the media, it's not always the entire truth.
  • by Dan Location: Knox County on Apr 30, 2009 at 10:00 AM
    I reallly wish the state would release a little more information re: how this child was exposed. Had the child travelled to Mexico or to Southern California? - These are hugely important questions to answer re: the potential spread of a contagious illness.
  • by John Location: Sevierville on Apr 30, 2009 at 10:00 AM
    Now is not the time to panic. Tommorrow at 3:30 is the time to panic. Unless you are driving, then wait till you get to your destination, then panic. LOL
  • by Theresa Location: Sevier County on Apr 29, 2009 at 10:05 PM
    Concerns about the spread of swine flu have spread across the country. With one child dead in Texas, the first official case in a TN school, and countless cases in schools through out the country, as a mom I can't help but be concerned. And I know many moms across Tennessee are also concerned. In Sevier County, due in part to the seasonal nature of tourism, we have a large number of families who have come up from Mexico. Some of these children have returned from Mexico from spring break with coughs. Do they have the flu? By the time we find out, it will be too late to contain it. It seems to me that considering the serious nature of the threat, it might be better to simply close the schools earlier this year while we work through the challenges we face. Because the truth is, if we leave our schools open, we will be forcing parents to choose between obeying the law or putting their children's lives at risk. No parent should be forced to make that choice.


6450 Papermill Drive Knoxville, TN 37919 Phone - (865) 450-8888; Fax - (865) 450-8869
Copyright © 2015 WVLT-TV Inc. - Designed by Gray Digital Media - Powered by Clickability 44027492 - local8now.com/a?a=44027492
Gray Television, Inc.