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Wednesday, October 28, 2009


Flu season is upon us
Pat Kimble
Superintendent Adams County/Ohio Valley School District

If you haven't already experienced it or heard about it, the flu season is upon us. Specifically, I am referring to the fact that the H1N1 virus is now present in Adams County. It has been reported to me that we have some "lab confirmed cases" of H1N1 in our school district. I passed this information along to parents on Oct. 9.

Since it really isn't time for our "normal" flu season to get cranked up, all cases of flu at this time are being considered as H1N1 (swine flu) whether or not they have been confirmed as such through lab testing. Lab testing per case/individual costs about $500.

Obviously, due to the costs involved, everyone showing symptoms of flu will not be tested for H1N1. Regardless of the number of reported lab tested cases for H1N1 in Adams County, the actual number of people infected with this virus is probably a lot higher than we think or know.

So, let's review things that we can all do to help control the spread of this virus:

1. Sneeze and/or cough into a handkerchief or tissue, and not into the open air. If you don't have a tissue, then sneeze/cough into your shirt sleeve by placing your elbow up to your face. This cuts down on germs being spread through the air and landing on other objects that could come into contact with your skin and/or body openings.

2. Use the "hands off the face" approach. Resist all temptations to touch any part of the face.

3. Wash your hands frequently and thoroughly with an antibacterial soap.

4. Use hand sanitizer frequently, preferably one that has a non-alcohol base.

5. Keep some sanitary wipes handy to wipe down desktops, tabletops, railings, doorknobs, phones, computer keyboards, etc.

6. Clean restroom areas frequently and thoroughly.

7. Don't share water bottles, cups, glasses, etc.

8. Gargle twice a day with warm salt water. Simple gargling prevents proliferation.

9. Boost your natural immunity with foods that are rich in Vitamin C, such as citrus fruits.

10. Drink as much of warm liquids as you can. Drinking warm liquids has the same effect as gargling, but in the reverse

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