« 9/1/09: Faculty and Staff H1N1 Flu Guidance Information | Main | 9/10/09: Reported Incident of Flu Like-Illness »

09/01/2009

9/1/09: Student H1N1 Flu Guidance Information

Introduction

The information outlined below is based on the interim Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Guidance for Institutions of Higher Education in response to the H1N1 Flu.

The CDC recommendations are based on current information and are subject to change based on ongoing surveillance and risk assessment. The University of the Sciences Pandemic Preparedness Team monitors reports, works with area organizations and has established points of contact with the Philadelphia Department of Public Health Division of Disease Control (PDPHDDC.) 

The information provided by the CDC and the PDPHDDC provides interim guidance to institutions on suggested means to reduce the spread of the H1N1 virus on campus. The recommendations are based on the recognition of sustained human-to-human transmission of the virus, which has spread across the United States, and information that suggests most cases of illness from this virus are similar in severity to seasonal influenza. A key difference however is the increased frequency of H1N1 infections in children and young adults versus the seasonal flu.

Take Precautions

There are everyday actions that can help prevent the spread of germs that cause influenza. Take these everyday steps to protect your health:

  • Eat right and get plenty of rest and exercise
  • Cover your nose and mouth when you cough or sneeze; preferably by coughing or sneezing into your sleeve or a single use disposable tissue
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water
  • Use alcohol-based hand cleaners
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth to prevent the spread of germs
  • Try to avoid close contact with sick people
  • Those with flu-like illness (fever, cough, sneezing, chills, aches, sometimes diarrhea or vomiting) should stay away from classes/work and limit interactions with other people (called “self-isolation”), except to seek medical care, for at least 24 hours after they no longer have a fever, or signs of a fever, without the use of fever-reducing medicines. Some people with influenza will not have fever; therefore, absence of fever does not mean absence of infection. They should stay away from others during this time period even if they are taking antiviral drugs for treatment of the flu
  • Consider getting a flu shot and the H1N1 vaccination when it becomes available

 

What to Do If You Experience Influenza-like Illness

 

  • STAY HOME or in your residence hall and limit interactions with other people (called “self-isolation”), except to seek medical care, for at least 24 hours after you no longer have a fever, or signs of a fever, without the use of fever-reducing medicines. It is possible that people with influenza will not have fever; therefore, absence of fever does not mean absence of infection. Students should stay away from others during this period even if they are taking antiviral drugs for treatment of the flu.
  • Seek immediate medical attention if you are at a high risk of severe illness from the flu due to chronic health conditions or an otherwise compromised immune response system, or if you experience difficulty breathing
  • Call or go to the Student Health Services Office (SHAC) at 215-596-8980  for additional guidance
  • Call your emergency contact person and let them know you are sick
  • If possible arrange to go home
  • Contact your primary healthcare provider and let them know that you are experiencing an influenza-like illness (fever, cough, sneezing, chills, aches, sometimes diarrhea or vomiting)
  • Contact your professor letting them know you are ill
  • Contact your academic dean’s office to request a short term leave to cover you while you are not attending classes (see pages 103-104 in the 2009-2010 Student Handbook for additional details)
  • Contact the Division of Student Affairs at extension 215-596-8950,  as they are prepared to assist you during your absence

 

For additional information, the University of the Sciences Pandemic Preparedness Team recommends that you visit the CDC website at http://www.cdc.gov, or the University’s Emergency Information Website at  http://www.emergency.usp.edu.

> Coughing Tips