Three St. James Students with H1N1, Recovered and Back at School, Immunization Expected mid-November


St. James School has experienced three cases of H1N1 as of October 25, 2009. The H1N1 cases were confirmed by nasal swabs. St. James School has reported to its community that the affected students have recovered and have returned to school in good health.

Staff members are continuing to remind children of best practices in hand washing and respiratory etiquette with the flu season upon us. Schools have been advised to carry on with normal schedules and activities, keeping these best practices in mind. The school is following guidance and consultation with the Cook County Department of Public Health, which plans on holding immunization clinics at schools according to zip codes. The anticipated date for student H1N1 vaccines in 60004 is mid-November. The exact date is not known at this time. St. James will be a clinic site offering vaccines to the school’s children.

Parents are advised to obtain the vaccination from their family physicians.

A parent information meeting on H1N1 (Swine Flu) will be held on Wednesday, November 4 at 7:00pm at South Middle School. Consent forms for H1N1 vaccination along with information were sent home Monday October 26, 2009. A parent or their designee must be present with the student for the vaccine to be administered, and consent forms must be properly completed and signed before immunizations are given.

Even as H1N1 Swine Flu was declared a national emergency, vaccination shortages for H1N1 are causing concern. FOX News medical contributor Dr. Marc Siegel said Tuesday that since the regular seasonal flu is being ‘crowded out’ by the H1N1 flu and won’t peak until January 2010, production channels for immunizations should all focus on H1N1 immunizations.

In October, only FluMist was available. FluMist is the nasal spray version that can be used by only certain people. According to the CDC, the following people should NOT be immunized by the nasal spray version:

People younger than 2 years of age;
Pregnant women;
People 50 years of age and older;
People with a medical condition that places them at higher risk for complications from influenza, including those with chronic heart or lung disease, such as asthma or reactive airways disease; people with medical conditions such as diabetes or kidney failure; or people with illnesses that weaken the immune system, or who take medications that can weaken the immune system;
Children younger than 5 years old with a history of recurrent wheezing;
Children or adolescents receiving aspirin therapy;
People who have had Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS), a rare disorder of the nervous system, within 6 weeks of getting a flu vaccine,
People who have a severe allergy to chicken eggs or who are allergic to any of the nasal spray vaccine components.

In some past winters, the CDC has counted 40 or 50 child deaths for the entire flu season for regular seasonal flu. As of mid-October 2009, 86 deaths of children have been reported since April 2009.

More info …
CDC Questions and Answers About 2009 H1N1 Nasal Spray Vaccine …

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