In light of the current Swine Influenza Alert, I am providing you with some information and resources. The Allegan and Ottawa County Health Departments are intensely monitoring the reports of swine influenza. One suspected case has been reported in Michigan at this time, however this has not been confirmed. The symptoms of swine flu in people are similar to the symptoms of regular human seasonal influenza and include fever, lethargy, lack of appetite and coughing. Some people with swine flu also have reported runny nose, sore throat, nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. While there is no cause for alarm, prevention is important. A one page fact sheet for schools from the Ottawa County Health Department is attached. Both health departments recommend the following prevention strategies:
1. Covering your mouth and nose with a tissue or your inner elbow when coughing or sneezing. It may prevent those around
you from getting sick.
2. Washing your hands often with soap and water will help protect you from germs. While not a substitution for proper hand washing,
you can also use an alcohol- based hand sanitizers if needed.
3. Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth. Germs are often spread when a person touches something that is contaminated with germs and then touches his or her eyes, nose or mouth.
4. Keep your distance: Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
5. Stay home from work, school and errands when you are sick. You will help prevent others from catching your illness.
A flyer from the Ottawa County Health Department is also available for you to read: school-swine-info