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H1N1 Swine Flu confirmed case at BCHS

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By Mallory Bilger

SHEPHERDSVILLE -- The Bullitt County School District's first reported case of the H1N1 virus -- commonly known as Swine Flu -- has been confirmed in a Bullitt Central staff member, according to a district press release.

According to a district press release, Health Coordinator for Bullitt County Public Schools Lesa Bodine confirmed the case today. The district has distributed an informational letter via students and e-mail informing parents about the situation.

In an e-mail on the system's listserv, Superintendent Keith Davis said the school's name was released to avoid secrecy.

"I only mention the school name to avoid criticism of being secretive, because it could be and it is highly likely that it will be detected in any or all our our community's schools," Davis wrote.

The district is directing parents and guardians with questions about the H1N1 virus to visit the county's health department site at: http://www.bullittcountyhealthdept.com/SwineFlu2009.htm.

The following is the text of the letter distributed to students today:

By now, you have probably noticed news stories about an increase number of H1N1 (swine flu) cases becoming increasingly common in the schools across the county and, as such, are appearing in schools across our district. The safety of our students is our highest priority, so let me assure you that all advised precautions will be taken when we are informed of a student or staff member with this diagnosis.   

As you know, this flu is spreading easily from person to person and school-age children are among the groups most affected. So we do expect to hear of more cases in our schools. Because of this high number of expected cases, not all care providers will do testing as they feel most patients who present with flu like illness during the summer and early fall will likely have the H1N1 infection. Fortunately, many who have had this infection, and are not in a high-risk group, have had full recovery similar to typical seasonal flu. 

Under the new guidance from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), people with influenza-like illness should remain at home until at least 24 hours after they are free of fever (100 degrees F), or signs of a fever without the use of fever reducing medications. So as parents, we ask that you plan for child care at home if your child gets sick, monitor the health of the sick child and any other children by checking for fever and other symptoms of flu, update the school with phone numbers so that we can reach you.   To help prevent the spread of influenza, teach your family good hygiene habits: ·        * Wash hands frequently for 20 seconds or the length of the “Happy Birthday” song twice. ·        * Do not touch eyes, nose or mouth. ·        * It is not necessary to disinfect beyond routine cleaning. ·        * Regularly clean areas and items likely to have frequent hand contact. ·        * Cover mouth and nose when sneezing or coughing with paper tissue or use bend of elbow. Discard tissues immediately after each use and then wash hands. ·        * Do not share eating utensils, drink from the same cup or share toothbrushes. ·        * Avoid close contact with people who are sick. ·        * Use hand sanitizer when soap and water are not accessible   We will continue to follow all recommendations as outlined from the CDC and health department and will aim to keep you informed of the situation in our district. Please know that we will do everything we can to keep your child safe while in our care.

Sincerely,

  Keith Davis Superintendent

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