Influenza is a virus that infects the nose, throat and lungs. Infection is spread easily from person to person through coughing, sneezing, or close face-to-face contact and even when a person touches tiny droplets from coughs or sneezes on another person or object and then touches their face before washing their hands. When children are in close proximity to each other, such as at school or during play, influenza can spread very easily.
You can reduce your risk of catching influenza and reduce its spread in a school setting by:
- Washing your hands regularly and ensuring that children also wash their hands properly and on a regular basis.
- Ensuring tissues are disposed of in the garbage.
- Ensuring children cough and sneeze into their shirt sleeve rather than their hands.
- Ensuring children stay home when they are ill and do not return until they are able to resume their normal activities.
- Getting the influenza vaccine.
New this year, Expanded Eligibility Criteria for the Influenza Vaccine, now healthy children 6 months - 59 months and thier caregivers can receive the flu vaccine.
For more detailed information about influenza and Northern Health's Influenza Program and clinics
Further questions about influenza in the school setting? Contact your local health unit or school nurse.