Swine flu hits SWLA schools

By Adam Hooper - bio | email

LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - The school board had earlier told 7 news that four schools in Calcasieu Parish had confirmed cases of swine flu. Now, those officials have said, only two of those schools actually have confirmed cases. This comes as local officials met to discuss the swine flu threat where Doctor B.J Foch with the state office of public health explains it is not as bad as you may think.

"It is a mild illness at this point. Yes, there are some hospitalizations, there are some deaths, but most healthy people can take care of this flu like illness at home," said Doctor B.J. Foch.

At the meeting were several officials from the Calcasieu Parish school board. As of now, they have confirmed three cases of swine flu, one at Molo middle, and two at J.I. Watson. Among the unconfirmed cases, the school board reports one at E.K. Key elementary, and one at Fairview elementary.
The school board and the C.D.C are both in agreement, that with the lack of severity of the H1N1 virus, no schools need to be closed. In dealing with this problem, risk manager for Calcasieu Parish schools, Ron Hayes said it is simple.

"If you are sick stay at home. If you are well come to school," said Ron Hayes

One parent said, when it comes to the safety of children, parents need to be notified of any possible danger.

"I think they need to alert the parents. I will be very upset if I get home and I check my child's back pack, and there is not a letter saying that there is a case," said Lucinda Rinto.

And, while there was no letter sent out today, the school board is currently working on protocol on how and when to alert the media and parents of a possible outbreak.

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