How daycare centers prevent flu outbreaks - WSIL-TV 3 Southern Illinois

How daycare centers prevent flu outbreaks

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CARTERVILLE -- The Center for Disease Control and Prevention said more than 50 kids across the nation have died from the flu this season.

Keeping kids safe is not just a job for parents, but also for schools and daycare providers. 

Robin Moore owns Robin's Nest Learning Center in Carterville.

She knows schools and daycares can be breeding grounds for viruses like the flu.

"Obviously it's that time of season where kids are dripping, it's cold outside, they come in, their noses are runny," said Moore.

With more than 350 kids in and out of the building every day, preventing a flu outbreak is of top concern for the staff at Robin's Nest.

"Handwashing is the most important thing to keep illness down," said Moore. 

The staff also wipes down every surface kids come into contact with throughout the day.

"We bleach everything. We bleach. We clean daily," said Moore. "Anything that goes into a mouth, we wash. We have a detailed sanitation process that we do every day."

It's working, so far. 

Moore said the flu hasn't been a problem for her kiddos this season.

"I really feel the reason we haven't been hit as hard is the good bleaching and handwashing," said Moore. 

Daycares across the state are taking similar precautions. 

More than 3,000 people in Illinois have tested positive for the flu this season, six times as many than at this point last year, according to data from the Illinois Department of Public Health.

Health officials encourage people to get a flu shot. 

The Franklin-Williamson Bi-County Health Department also suggests the following measures to prevent the flu:

  • Wash your hands frequently with soap and warm water 
  • Cover your nose and mouth when you cough and sneeze, preferably with a tissue or your arm, not your hands.  Promptly discard the tissue.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.  When you are sick, keep your distance from others to protect them from getting sick.
  • If you are sick with cough or fever, stay home from work or school until you recover.
  • Contact your doctor if you are experiencing severe symptoms that you believe require medical attention.
  • Do not share things that go into the mouth, such as drinking cups, straws, etc.
  • Frequently clean commonly touched surfaces (door knobs, refrigerator handle, phone, water faucets) if someone in your house has a cold or the flu.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth.  Germs are often spread when a person touches something that is contaminated with germs and then touches his or her eyes, nose or mouth.

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