Health Guidance from Superintendent John White

Guidance to Help Prevent the Spread of Illness

Several illnesses in the news have captivated the attention of Americans. The Ebola virus dominates headlines, enterovirus D68 has sickened children this year, and flu season is also here. The Louisiana Department of Education is encouraging parents, teachers and child care providers to practice simple habits, and teach these habits to children, to help prevent the spread of illnesses.

  • Cover your coughs and sneezes with a tissue or shirt sleeve, not your hands.
  • Wash hands often with soap and water for 20 seconds, or use hand sanitizer.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with sick people.
  • Stay home when you are sick and keep sick children out of school.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces, especially if someone is sick.
  • If you are sick, seek medical attention.
  • Get the seasonal flu vaccination.

Ebola virus

Ebola is a rare and deadly disease with symptoms including fever, severe headache, muscle pain, weakness, diarrhea, vomiting, stomach pain and unexplained bleeding. Only two people have contracted the Ebola virus domestically, both were health care workers who were treating an Ebola patient. Most Ebola infections occur in western Africa. Contracting Ebola in the United States is highly unlikely.
Learn more at:
What You Need to Know about Ebola-CDC
Ebola Resources-DHH

Enterovirus D68

The state health department has confirmed two cases of enterovirus D68 (EV-D68) this year. Nationally, almost 800 people have been infected. EV-D68 causes mild to severe respiratory illness, especially in children. Symptoms include fever, coughing, body aches and a runny nose. Children with asthma or other respiratory illnesses are the most susceptible.
Learn more at:
Fact sheet for parents-CDC
General questions and answers for the public-CDC
Enterovirus D68 Louisiana-DHH

Seasonal Flu

Every year, millions of people get the flu. In the U.S., more than 36,000 people die and more than 200,000 are hospitalized each year. The flu can cause fever, cough, sore throat, runny/stuffy nose, chills, fatigue and body aches. Most people who get the flu can stay home and recover. But, for some people, the flu can cause pneumonia and be a bigger threat and can be deadly.
Learn more at:
Flu Information for Parents with Young Children
Information for Schools and Child Care Providers
Fight the Flu-DHH