Cold & Flu Season

Cold & Flu Season
Posted on 01/29/2018
cold and flu

Dear North Branch Area School Families,

 

The 2017-18 cold and flu season is in full swing.  We have had several confirmed cases of Strep, Influenza A and Influenza B in the district since the beginning of the new year. If your child has had a confirmed case of any or the above communicable diseases please contact the child’s school. We are required to notify the Lapeer County Health Department weekly with any communicable diseases.  The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that anyone  6 months and older receive the flu vaccine every year.  The flu vaccine is widely available in our area and it’s not too late to get one.  The flu season is expected to last another 8-10 weeks.

 

Illnesses like Influenza and colds are spread from person to person via respiratory droplets. These droplets are spread by coughing, sneezing or by touching objects or people with contaminated hands. We know that some of these viruses and bacterias can live two hours or longer on surfaces such as door knobs or desks.  

 

Another common illness this time of the year is the “stomach bug” or gastroenteritis.  This is not the flu.  Although viral illnesses can be spread from person to person during normal daily activities, there are some simple thing which help reduce the spread of these illnesses:

 

  • Cover your mouth and nose when sneezing or coughing.  Use a tissue if possible but if a tissue is not handy use the inner elbow or upper sleeve rather than your hands. Also. wash your hands after using a tissue.  This practice prevents the spread of germs via the hands.
  • Keep you hands away from your eyes, nose and mouth.
  • Wash or use hand sanitizer frequently.
  • Do not share cups, water bottles or eating utensils.
  • Stay home when you are sick.

 

Your child should stay home from school if they have a fever > 99.6(1 degree above normal).  If your child has had a recent fever or if they were sent home from school with a fever, they should not return to school until they have been fever free for 24 hours (without the help of Acetaminophen(Tylenol) or Ibuprofen(Motrin,Advil).  This allows time to ensure that their elevated temperature does not return (and abides by our 24 hour free of fever policy).  They should also stay home (with or without a fever) if they have symptoms which are obvious of illness, i.e. recent vomiting, malaise, coughing and congestion.  By staying home when they are sick, children are helping themselves recuperate and are helping their peers stay healthy.

 

Below is a link to the CDC Flu guide to parents. https://www.cdc.gov/flu/pdf/freeresources/updated/a-flu-guide-for-parents.pdf

 

If you have any questions please contact your family physician or the Lapeer County Health Department.

 

 Sincerely,

 

Patricia A. Fernholz-Laur RN, BSN

NBAS School Nurse