by VR Sreeraman on  August 8, 2009 at 11:43 AM General Health News
 US Unveils Prevention Guidelines to Curb Flu Spread in Schools
The United States unveiled guidelines Friday aimed at curbing the spread of 2009 H1N1 influenza in schools.

A response will depend on the scope of an outbreak, but "for an outbreak similar in severity to the spring 2009 H1N1 infection, the guidelines recommend basic good hygiene, such as hand washing," a Homeland Security statement said.

"In addition, students or staff members with flu-like illness (showing symptoms of flu) should stay home at least 24 hours after fever symptoms have ended," it added.

"We?re going to continue to do everything possible to keep our children and all Americans healthy and safe this fall," Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen 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 new US guidelines also recommend schools set up plans 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," the statement added.

Swine flu joins Mexican drug trafficking and climate change on a packed agenda of talks between North American leaders in Mexico this weekend.

Joint measures to contain swine flu, which hobbled Mexico's tourism industry after it broke out in April, are also a key concern on the continent worst hit by A(H1N1).

Source: AFP

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