Warning: Creating default object from empty value in /home/denebolasandbox/denebola_2009/wp-includes/ms-load.php on line 113
Denebola » Swine flu spreads anxiety in Newton » Print

- Denebola - http://www.denebolaonline.net -

Swine flu spreads anxiety in Newton

Posted By Jeremiah Davis On May 13, 2009 @ 3:01 am In Global Education | Comments Disabled

Over the past month, the Swine Flu, an infectious new strain of influenza (H1N1) officially spread to 36 states and 17 countries. A total of 43 countries suspect cases of the virus. The pandemic alert level of the Swine Flu was raised to five, the second-highest level, on April 29.

Three eighth graders at Oak Hill Middle School have confirmed cases of the Swine Flu. According to Oak Hill principal Hank Van Putten, however, the students, who have been recommended to stay home for seven days, are making good recoveries.

Despite the fears of public health officials, Newton South remains relatively unaffected by the virus. No cases have involving members of the students or faculty been reported.

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) officially recognized the Swine Flu on March 30 in an infected patient in San Diego, California. Soon after, this virus was identified to be the same disease that had killed over 100 people in Mexico in March. Over the past month, the disease has continued to spread worldwide.

At the moment, prominent medical organizations in the area, such as the Boston Public Health Commission, have issued statements regarding the virus and have advised citizens to stay vigilant and careful.

In response to the warnings, however, the PTSO as well as school nurse Gail Kramer sent out information regarding the swine flu in emails that outlined the information that the Newton Public Schools recently received from the Massachusetts Department of Health.

“People are really worried. There’s a hysteria around it, Kramer said. “We haven’t seen anything at all [at South].

According to Kramer, even those who traveled to Mexico over April vacation and are thought to be the most susceptible have not shown any flu-like symptoms. 

Kramer advises frequent hand washing and “cough etiquette in order to ensure that no viruses are spread but remains largely neutral when assessing the threat of the illness.

South’s teachers generally feel that the Swine Flu is not as serious as the media portrays it to be.

“I’m not worried at all, Principal Brian Salzer said. “There have always been outbreaks of illnesses. We should react with concern, but not with panic.

Salzer said that he is willing and able to close the school if the situation worsens or if a student contracts the disease.

South wellness teacher Joanna Norton also sees little reason to be worried.

“I view it as a flu, Norton said. “I have only heard kids making jokes. No one is saying ‘ËœI’m changing my lifestyle to avoid getting swine flu.

Norton suggested that one of the possible reasons there has been such a strong reaction to the virus is the fact that it is not currently flu season.

Still, many members of the South community display concern about the Swine flu.

“My friend went to Mexico over April break and now nobody will talk to her, freshman Julia Share said. 

There is still a feeling of uneasiness about the virus, especially because of its domination of the media.

“[The World Health Organization] wouldn’t rate it a five out of a scale of six if it wasn’t serious, photography teacher Bob Bouchal said. 

“People just have to be careful, just like any other time of the year, Kramer said.

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) officially recognized the Swine Flu on March 30 in an infected patient in San Diego, California. Soon after, this virus was identified as the same disease that had killed over 100 people in Mexico during March. Over the past month, the disease has continued to spread worldwide.

At the moment, prominent medical organizations in the area such as the Boston Public Health Commission have issued statements regarding the virus and have advised citizens to stay vigilant and careful.  So far, however, there have not been any recorded cases in Boston and no serious action has been taken.

Despite the fears of public health officials, Newton South remains relatively unaffected by the virus. No cases have been reported involving members of the students or faculty.

In response to the warnings, however, the PTSO, as well as school nurse Gail Kramer sent out information regarding the swine flu in emails that outlined the information that the Newton Public Schools recently received from the Massachusetts Department of Health.

“People are really worried. There’s a hysteria around it, Kramer said. “We haven’t seen anything at all [at South].
According to Kramer, even those who traveled to Mexico over April vacation and are thought to be the most susceptible have not shown any flu-like symptoms. 

Kramer advises frequent hand washing and “cough etiquette in order to ensure that no viruses are spread but remains largely neutral when assessing the threat of the illness.

South’s teachers generally feel that the Swine Flu is not as serious as the media portrays it to be.

“I’m not worried at all, Principal Brian Salzer said. “There have always been outbreaks of illnesses. We should react with concern, but not with panic.

Salzer said that he is willing and able to close the school if the situation worsens or if a student contracts the disease.

South wellness teacher Joanna Norton also sees little reason to be worried.

“I view it as a flu, Norton said. “I have only heard kids making jokes. No one is saying ‘ËœI’m changing my lifestyle to avoid getting swine flu.

Norton suggested that one of the possible reasons there has been such a strong reaction to the virus is the fact that it is not currently flu season.

Still, many members of the South community display concern about the Swine flu.

“My friend went to Mexico over April break and now nobody will talk to her, freshman Julia Share said. 
There is still a feeling of uneasiness about the virus, especially because of its domination of the media. 

“[The World Health Organization] wouldn’t rate it a five out of a scale of six if it wasn’t serious, photography teacher Bob Bouchal said. 

“People just have to be careful, just like any other time of the year, Kramer said.

Read more


Article printed from Denebola: http://www.denebolaonline.net

URL to article: http://www.denebolaonline.net/2009/05/13/swine-flu-spreads-anxiety-in-newton/

URLs in this post:

[1] Mexico reopens schools: http://www.denebolaonline.net/2009/05/13/mexico-reopens-schools/

[2] Return of H1N1 cases anticipated: http://www.denebolaonline.net/2009/09/30/return-of-h1n1-cases-anticipated/

[3] Despite increasing swine flu concerns, South stays strong: http://www.denebolaonline.net/2009/11/25/despite-increasing-swine-flu-concerns-south-stays-strong/

[4] H1N-EVERY-1 PANIC!: http://www.denebolaonline.net/2009/05/13/h1n-every-1-panic/

[5] Egypt slaughters pigs to prevent spread of H1N1: http://www.denebolaonline.net/2009/05/27/egypt-slaughters-pigs-to-prevent-spread-of-h1n1/

Copyright © Denebola - The Official School Newspaper of Newton South High School