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Swine Flu

Swine Flu - January 2011

The NHS advises that swine flu (H1N1 virus) it to be treated as any other seasonal flu.

  • There are no reporting requirements to either the Health Protection Agency or the local authority.
  • There is no need to exclude any pupils from school unless they are displaying flu symptoms.
  • There is no need to notify other parents of cases within the school.

If a school remains concerned they can call the local Health Protection Unit (HPU) on 01462 705300 for health related advice.

The NHS is advising those in an ‘at risk’ group to have a flu jab. Heads are asked to encourage parents of children or staff who are ‘at risk’ to visit their GPs.

You should have the seasonal flu vaccination if you are:
a. aged 65 years or over
b. living in a residential or nursing home, or
c. the main carer for an older or disabled person.

Even if you feel healthy, you may still be at increased risk of seasonal flu. The free seasonal flu vaccination is recommended if you have:
a. a heart problem
b. a chest complaint or breathing difficulties including, bronchitis, emphysema
c. a kidney disease
d. lowered immunity due to disease or treatment (such as steroid medication or cancer treatment)
e. a liver disease
f. had a stroke or a transient ischaemic attack (TIA)
g. diabetes
h. a neurological condition e.g. multiple sclerosis (MS) or cerebral palsy
i. a problem with, or removal of, your spleen e.g. sickle cell disease.

Pregnant women will also be offered the flu vaccination this year. This is because pregnant women who catch the H1N1 virus are at an increased risk of developing a more serious illness.

The Health Protection Agency has a useful leaflet “Influenza Factsheet for Schools” available to download from their website. This includes information on how you can reduce the risk of influenza transmission in schools and how soon a child should be back at school after influenza.

Printable version:

Janet Biscoe
Head of Communications
Tel: 01992 588532