From April 15, 2009 to July 24, 2009, states reported a total of 43,771 confirmed and probable cases of novel influenza A (H1N1) infection. Of these cases reported, 5,011 people were hospitalized and 302 people died. On July 24, 2009, confirmed and probable case counts were discontinued.
Recommended school responses for the 2009-2010 school year
Under conditions with similar severity as in spring 2009
- Stay home when sick:
Those with flu-like illness should stay home for at least 24 hours after they no longer have a fever, or signs of a fever, without the use of fever-reducing medicines. They should stay home even if they are using antiviral drugs. (For more information, see CDC Recommendations for the Amount of Time Persons with Influenza-Like Illness Should be Away from Others.)
See the Technical Report for more details about staying home when sick >>
- Separate ill students and staff:
Students and staff who appear to have flu-like illness should be sent to a room separate from others until they can be sent home. CDC recommends that they wear a surgical mask, if possible, and that those who care for ill students and staff wear protective gear such as a mask.
See the Technical Report for more details about separating ill students and staff >>
- Hand hygiene and respiratory etiquette:
The new recommendations emphasize the importance of the basic foundations of influenza prevention: stay home when sick, wash hands frequently with soap and water when possible, and cover noses and mouths with a tissue when coughing or sneezing (or a shirt sleeve or elbow if no tissue is available).
See the Technical Report for more details about hand hygiene and respiratory etiquette >>
- Routine cleaning:
School staff should routinely clean areas that students and staff touch often with the cleaners they typically use. Special cleaning with bleach and other non-detergent-based cleaners is not necessary.
See the Technical Report for more details about routine cleaning >>
- Early treatment of high-risk students and staff:
People at high risk for influenza complications who become ill with influenza-like illness should speak with their health care provider as soon as possible. Early treatment with antiviral medications is very important for people at high risk because it can prevent hospitalizations and deaths. People at high risk include those who are pregnant, have asthma or diabetes, have compromised immune systems, or have neuromuscular diseases.
See the Technical Report for more details about early treatment >>
- Consideration of selective school dismissal:
Although there are not many schools where all or most students are at high risk (for example, schools for medically fragile children or for pregnant students) a community might decide to dismiss such a school to better protect these high-risk students.
See the Technical Report for more details about selective school dismissal >>