As children return to school tomorrow after the Christmas break, schools, parents and crèches need clear guidance from the HSE on how to prevent the spread of influenza, the Social Democrats’ spokesperson on Children, Councillor Jennifer Whitmore, said today.

Councillor Whitmore said:

“Many parents I have spoken to over the past week are concerned about how the return to school will impact on their children’s health. Guidance is required from the Health Service Executive on what to look for, how to treat it, and how to prevent the spread of influenza.

“The HSE has said it expects a leap in the numbers of people with flu when schools go back. The most recent HSE Influenza Surveillance Report, published on 4th January 2018, shows that there was an increase in influenza like illnesses in all age groups in the last two weeks of 2017.  The highest rates were reported in the 0-4 year age group. Many of these pre-school children are likely to have siblings of school going age, and some may also be attending crèches.

“Clear and comprehensive public information must be made available so that parents, schools and crèches are aware of how to prevent the spread of flu and how to recognise symptoms in order to stop the illness from spreading in our communities.”


7 January 2018

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