It's August and that means that school is just around the corner. Teachers are decorating their classrooms, organizing student seating charts, thinking up fun activities and preparing for a possible swine flu outbreak.
Last spring, at the outset of the H1N1 virus (aka "swine flu") outbreak, the primary response was to close a school and have it scrubbed down. But as school approaches, the Washington Post is reporting that school officials around the country are reconsidering their approach to combating the H1N1 flu virus.
Under the new guidelines, still under development, closures would "only happen only under 'extenuating circumstances,' such as if a campus has many children with underlying medical conditions."
One of the best ways to protect yourself from the H1N1 virus is to wash your hands and stay informed about possible outbreaks in your area. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC), as well as most school districts, post updated flu information on their websites.
The CDC also maintains several Twitter streams (see 'Related Links') with the latest information on the seasonal and H1N1 flu virus outbreaks.
Perhaps the easiest way to stay up-to-date about swine flu is to get updates delivered directly to your mobile device via SMS. The team over at CellPhones.org have created a new service designed to help you stay informed during the fall flu season.
Here's how it works:
- Text PIGFLU to 41411 and CellPhones.org will send updates as news develops about the Swine Flu.
- The only cost is your cost for receiving regular text messages, and there will be no other billing.
- CellPhones.org are providing this service in the public interest.
Daily Updates will include:
- CDC/WHO Updates
- Information about New Out Breaks
- Information From Health Authorities