Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Swine flu hits schools hard

Swine flu seems to have erupted on to the scene again, with outbreaks in schools in both the North & South Islands. More than 300 pupils were absent from Wairarapa schools this week, with a highly infectious virus, presumed to be swine flu. There was a confirmed outbreak infecting at least 50 pupils from Seddon School, near Blenheim, last week.

It'll be interesting to see how long it will be before we are getting similar outbreaks in Porirua schools.

I can't stress the importance of hygiene enough, and if your kids are sick, please keep them at home.

From the Ministry of Health

Know how to protect yourself and your family

For some people influenza can be a very serious illness. The basic measures to protect yourself and others remain the same, but are even more important as we see more flu circulating in the community. These include:
  • get your seasonal influenza immunisation, which includes protection against swine flu
  • know the symptoms of influenza, which can include a high fever, headache, cough, sore throat, tiredness and generally aching all over
  • phone for medical advice quickly (GP or Healthline) if you have influenza-like symptoms, including consideration of whether you need antiviral medicine treatment. Antiviral medication may lessen the severity and length of your illness, but are best started within the first 48 hours. Antiviral treatment is currently available free of charge on prescription.
  • seeking early medical advice is especially important for women who are pregnant, severely overweight people and those with underlying medical conditions such as asthma, diabetes, cancer, heart and lung disease and other conditions including autoimmune diseases
  • wash and dry hands frequently, cover coughs and sneezes and stay home if you are sick.

Phone early for advice

If you or your family are ill and you are concerned, or if your condition worsens, get health advice by calling your GP or Healthline on 0800 611 116.

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