H1N1 Vaccine Now Available to All

All,

Welcome back for Spring Semester 2010. I hope you all have a great and healthy semester!! I want to inform everyone that I now have H1N1 vaccine for anyone who would like to get it. There are no restrictions on age. Last semester I had to turn some students away, because they did not fit the qualifications set by the state. 

I now have vaccine in my office and it is open to all. There is no charge for this vaccine. 

During a phone conference with the state this week there is a report of sporadic flu outbreaks in Vermont of H1N1. The concern is that there may be another outbreak in the Spring. We first heard about H1N1 in late April of 2009. If you have not had the vaccine, I would encourage you to get this. Prevention is key with any illness. 

Some other reminder to prevent illness:

  • Wash you hands often with soap and water, and if that is not available, use an alcohol-base hand sanitizer.
  • If you are sick (especially with a fever) please do not attend classes. CDC (Centers for Disease Control) recommends all with Flu-like symptoms to stay home until 24 hours after your fever has subsided without taking  fever-reducing medications such as Tylenol or Ibuprofen.
  • Cover your coughs and sneezes – in the event you do not have a Kleenex, cough/sneeze into your elbow or upper arm. Dispose of your tissues promptly into a trash container.
  • Avoid touching you eyes, nose and mouth. Germs spread easily this way.
  • Avoid close contact with sick people. 

The vaccine is available any time that I am in my office. I will be sending out my schedule shortly. 

Stay healthy, 

Deb Berg RN
SVC Health Services
Hunter Hall
802-447-4355 

Important things to know about the H1N1 virus and SVC’s recommendations for the opening of the 2009-2010 academic year:

See Debbie Berg's Flu Season Health Tip of the Week. 

  • H1N1 is a contagious respiratory illness that was identified this past spring, (formerly referred to as “swine flu”). Since then it has spread worldwide and has reached the highest alert stage for the World Health Organization. On the positive side, the numbers of illnesses have decreased in North America over the summer; however, there are concerns that with the reopening of schools and colleges there may be a reoccurrence. Health experts also are worried about the virus mutating.
  • At this time there are no changes to Southern Vermont College operations or activities as a result of H1N1.
  • The College has an Incident Response Team (IRT) in place who have been monitoring the developments of the H1N1 virus. The IRT have established protocols for response pending the severity of an H1N1 outbreak.
  • Our Health Services is prepared to meet with students showing any signs of the flu and can refer out for testing, as necessary.
  • Health Services is in close contact with the local Vermont Health Department regarding protocols for dealing with this illness and the vaccine that will be ready for distribution sometime this fall.
  • Symptoms of H1N1 are: fever, cough, chills, runny nose, sore throat, headache and body aches. If you have any of these symptoms please see Health Services.
  • If a student is ill s/he should consult with the respective faculty members as soon as possible to strategize how to handle any missed work.  

    Normal precautions to take during any influenza season: 

    • Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough and sneeze. In the event that you do not have a tissue you should sneeze or cough into your arm at your elbow. Dispose of the tissue immediately in a trash can.
    • Wash your hands frequently especially after attending classes and prior to eating. Wash with warm soapy water. In the event that water is not available use a waterless alcohol- based hand rub that can remove potentially infectious germs from your skin.
    • Try to avoid close contact (within six feet) with anyone who has symptoms such as fever, cough, or other respiratory symptoms.
    • Try to avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth.
    • Do not share drinks, water bottles, eating utensils, etc.

     If you are sick: 

    • Please see SVC Health Services in Hunter Hall (802-447-4355).
    • Faculty and staff should call their Primary Health Care Provider.  Any SVC community member who has been diagnosed as having H1N1 should notify Health Services.
    • Those who are ill should not attend school or work until 24 hours after a fever has broken. 

    Helpful links to learn more about the H1N1 virus and its current status: 

    www.cdc.gov/h1n1flu
    www.who.int/csr/disease/swineflu/en/
    http://healthvermont.gov/

    This site will be updated with new information as it develops.