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A recent spike in a respiratory illness has sent hundreds of children to hospitals across the Midwest since mid-August. At this time no reports of the virus, Enterovirus D68, have been reported in Natrona County according to Natrona County School District Nursing Coordinator Wendy Wilson. Listed below is information for parents, guardians and schools to better understand Enterovirus D68 and tips for keeping students healthy in the classroom and at home.
Enterovirus D68: Symptoms are similar to a very intense cold
Prevent the Spread of Germs:
* Teach children to cough or sneeze into the elbow
* Practice good hand-washing
* Throw tissues away after first use; do not keep them in a pocket or backpack. Wash hands immediately after use.
* Avoid sharing utensils or direct contact with those who are sick
* Backpacks can often carry many germs after being set on the floor at school or placed on the seats of school buses
If the backpack is washable, wash it once a week or wipe it down with an antibacterial cloth
* Fall sports are in full swing! Make sure to wash your students mouth-guard after each use and talk to your student about keeping it stored in a clean place
* Keep screens clean. Clean iPods, cellphones, iPads and other portable devices regularly with antibacterial wipes. Teach students to wash their hands before touching their face or eating.
NCSD Nursing Coordinator Wendy Wilson encourages parents and guardians to have a plan in case their child becomes sick, “If your child has a high fever, becomes short of breath, or his or her breathing is noticeably labored, take them to the Emergency Room or call 911”.