• Updated federal guidelines offer state and local public health and school officials a range of options for responding to 2009 H1N1 influenza in schools, depending on how severe the flu may be in their communities. The guidance says officials should balance the risk of flu in their communities with the disruption, potential safety risks, and other consequences that school dismissals could cause in education and the wider community.
    • The CDC anticipates more illness after the school year starts, because flu typically is transmitted more easily in the fall and winter.
      “We’re going to continue to do everything possible to keep our children – and all Americans – healthy and safe this fall,” Secretary Sebelius said. “But all Americans also have a part to play. The best way to prevent the spread of flu is vaccination. A seasonal flu vaccine is ready to go, and we should have one for the 2009 H1N1 flu by mid-October.
    • The guidelines also recommend schools have plans in place to deal with possible infection. For instance, people with flu-like illness should be sent to a room away from other people until they can be sent home. Schools should have plans for continuing the education of students who are at home, through phone calls, homework packets, Internet lessons and other approaches. And schools should have contingency plans to fill important positions such as school nurses.
    • schools could begin actively screening students upon arrival and sending ill students home immediately. If one family member is ill, students should stay home for five days from the day the illness develops, the guidelines say.

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

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