Ohio UniversityTtakes Steps to Beat the Flu

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Ohio University Campus Care is taking steps to combat the flu Epidemic on campus, as students return from home.

With the Ohio department of health confirming 2,503 hospitalizations, Ohio University is looking to keep students healthy. According to Medical Director of Campus Care Dr. John Kemerer, Campus Care has used twitter (@Campuscareone) to help spread information to students on how to prevent the flu, handing out hand sanitizer and masks around campus, and have acquired over 100 doses of influenza vaccine.

According to Athens County Health Commissioner Dr. James Gaskell, Athens County was hit hard by the flu outbreak before the students even arrived

“Their (the students) arrival may increase the incidence of the disease, but we have a very high incidence of disease anyway,” said Dr. Gaskell. “I’m not concerned that the influx of students is going to make our situation worse.”

According to Dr. Kemerer Campus Care has already had 4 confirmed cases on campus, but students have not been as sick as he would have expected considering how hard the virus has hit the Athens community.

The shortage of vaccine is also a major issue facing the community. Dr. Kemerer however did know of a few places that still had vaccine. They included Campus Care, The Family Practice Department, Expresscare, and other local pharmacies.

Dr. Gaskell noted that even though the vaccine is only 60 percent to 55 percent effective, less effective than it has been in years past. It is still helping fight more severe than usual symptoms.

“I have the feeling that the vaccine this year is modifying the disease,” said Dr. Gaskell. “So they are still getting sick with the disease, but they are not getting as sick as they would otherwise.”

Even if one can’t acquire the vaccine Dr. Kemerer said that the CDC has ix steps one can follow to avoid the spread of germs.

  1. Avoid close contact.
  2. Stay home if sick.
  3. Cover your mouth in your elbow when coughing or sneezing.
  4. Clean your hands often
  5. Avoid touching eyes or mouth
  6. Practice other good health habits including getting plenty of sleep, staying physically active, drink plenty of fluids, manage stress, and maintain a quality diet.