Information for the Bryn Mawr Community about H1N1 Flu (Swine Flu)

Posted August 19th, 2009 at 1:47 pm.

Update: Sept. 16, 2009

Information about Seasonal flu vaccines

Information about seasonal flu vaccines for the Bryn Mawr College community is available on this Web page.

The Student Health Center has registered with the Pennsylvania State Health Department to be a provider of the H1N1 vaccine when it becomes available. The Health Center will e-mail the community with more details and information regarding eligibility and distribution when the vaccine becomes available.

At this time, the CDC has identified the following priority groups for H1N1 vaccine:

  • Pregnant women
  • Household contacts and caregivers of infants Under 6 months of age
  • Healthcare and emergency medical services (EMS) workers
  • Children, adolescents, and young adults aged 6 months through 24 years
  • People between 25 and 64 years who have Chronic medical conditions

The Health Center also plans to make seasonal flu vaccinations available in October and will e-mail the community with further details.

Should a flu outbreak occur, otherwise healthy students with flu-like symptoms will be asked to stay in their rooms until they are fever-free for 24 hours. When students call into the Health Center and are diagnosed with possible flu, they will be given instructions for minimizing the spread of the disease to others. Arrangements will be made with Residential Life and Dining Services to make sure basic needs are being met and that all ill students are being monitored. Care of students with underlying health conditions that may put them at risk of complications should they contract the flu will be handled on an individual basis.

 

To the Bryn Mawr Community:

As many of you are undoubtedly aware, public-health officials are predicting a resurgence of H1N1 flu (Swine Flu) cases this fall.

The College has installed hand-sanitizer stations throughout the campus, will be widely distributing and posting prevention and hygiene tips, and has convened a group of senior campus health officials and administrators who are tasked with monitoring and responding to any possible H1N1 outbreak.

Bryn Mawr students are known for being passionate about their studies; however, students are urged to put their health, and the health of their fellow students, first. If at some point during the semester you are experiencing flu-like symptoms, please do not go to class and as soon as possible call the Student Health Center at 610-526-7360 to be evaluated. Faculty are being made aware that they may need to make greater allowances for student absences and periods of sickness during this flu season.

The latest recommendations by the Centers for Disease Control emphasize “the importance of the basic foundations of influenza prevention: stay home when sick, wash hands frequently with soap and water when possible, and cover noses and mouths with a tissue when coughing or sneezing (or a shirt sleeve or elbow if no tissue is available).”

Compiling a cold-and-flu kit

We recommend that all students equip themselves with a cold-and-flu kit containing

  • a thermometer
  • acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Advil)
  • cough syrup
  • bottled water, sports drinks and soups
  • alcohol-based hand sanitizer
  • boxes of tissues

Staff and faculty experiencing flu-like symptoms should stay home and contact their health-care providers.

The symptoms of swine flu in people are similar to the symptoms of seasonal flu in humans and may include:

  • Fever (greater than 100°F or 37.8°C)
  • Sore throat
  • Cough
  • Stuffy nose
  • Chills
  • Headache and body aches
  • Fatigue

Like seasonal flu, H1N1 flu may cause a worsening of underlying chronic medical conditions.

To prevent the spread of H1N1 flu:

  • Avoid contact with ill persons.
  • When you cough or sneeze, cover your nose and mouth with a tissue or your sleeve (if you do not have a tissue). Throw used tissues in a trash can.
  • Wash your hands often and especially after you cough or sneeze. Use soap and water or an alcohol-based hand gel.
  • Don’t share drinks, food, toothbrushes or eating utensils
  • If you think you are ill with flu, avoid close contact with others as much as possible. Do not go to class or other crowded places. Let your dean and instructors know if you are missing class due to illness.

Any questions or concerns can be sent to healthinquiries@brynmawr.edu.

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