Influenza Advisory - Spring 2016

Dear Students, Faculty and Staff:

The Virginia Department of Health (VDH) has reported an increase in influenza in our region for the first time this season. This means that this year the flu season is much later than expected. Please keep the following VDH guidelines in mind to decrease the risk of influenza:

  • Keep Your Hands Clean. Good hand hygiene limits the spread of germs. Use soap and water if your hands are visibly dirty or use alcohol based hand sanitizers. Keep your hands out of your eyes, nose, or mouth.
  • Practice Good Respiratory Hygiene and Cough Etiquette. Cover your mouth when coughing and cough into the inside of your elbow or sleeve.
  • Stay Home if Diagnosed with Influenza. Seek medical care as needed and isolate yourself from others. Stay isolated until you are fever-free for at least 24 hours (without the use of fever reducing medication). Students are expected to return home for recovery to limit the spread of infection, and must obtain clearance from the Health Center before their return to campus. Once cleared by the Health Center students will be removed from the isolation list.
  • Use Antiviral Drugs if Recommended by Your Doctor. Antiviral medications are most effective when given early in the illness. They may lessen the course of symptoms and decrease the risk for complications, like pneumonia- especially in the case of asthma.
  • Keep Your Environment Clean. Disinfect surfaces in bathrooms, kitchen counters, and bedside tables. Wash bed sheets and towels with laundry soap and tumble dry on hot settings.

If you have questions regarding influenza please contact the Health Center at 727-5315. Further information is available at http://www.cdc.gov/flu/.

Sincerely,

Karen T. Williams, M. D.

Medical Director, Health Center