Prevent the Spread of Flu at School
It’s flu season again. As schools begin to see more absences among staff and students, it is important to remember the guidelines for flu prevention in the school setting. Basic information about flu prevention includes:
- Encourage staff and students to wash their hands.Hand washing should be done frequently throughout the school day with warm water and soap. Alcohol-based hand sanitizers are also effective in cleaning the hands.
- Everyone should practice good respiratory etiquette.
Respiratory etiquette involves covering the nose and mouth when sneezing and coughing. Everyone should be encouraged to sneeze and cough into a tissue or their sleeves—not into their bare hands. Used tissues should be disposed of immediately and hands should be washed promptly.
- Vaccination against the flu should be done yearly. The flu vaccine can be administered as a nasal spray or by injection. All people over the age of 6 months should get this yearly vaccination.
- Encourage sick people to stay home from school. Staff and students with a fever and other flu symptoms (cough, head ache, runny nose, etc.) should stay
home until they are fever-free without the use of fever-lowering medications for 24 hours.
- Routine cleaning of the school, with special attention to frequently touched surfaces such as doorknobs and light switches, is sufficient during flu season. Find information about this at http://www.cdc.gov/flu/school/cleaning.htm
If you have specific questions about the flu or see an unusual number of illnesses at your school, you are en- couraged to contact your local health department for recommendations and guidance.
Source: Ohio Department of Health