UT continues efforts to prevent H1N1 spread through hygiene tools, vaccinations

October 20, 2009 | News, UToday
By Jeffrey Romagni

As part of the constant effort to prevent the spread of the H1N1 flu virus, UT recently installed 354 new hand-sanitizing stations around the University.

In addition to the existing dispensers in each restroom on Main, Scott Park and Health Science campuses, the installations were made in residence halls, academic buildings and Apple Tree Nursery School.

Along with the sanitizer, The University of Toledo Medical Center and its clinics have placed masks, gloves and tissues at each entrance.

“The best way to prevent the spread of disease at UT is for everyone to practice good hand hygiene and to cover his or her nose and mouth when sneezing,” said Sandy Hensley, infection control practitioner.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the definition of influenza-like illness is fever of 100 degrees or higher, plus either cough or sore throat. That’s why the University has made more than 1,000 disposable thermometers available for students at the front desks of residence halls.

“If you think about it, packing a thermometer probably wasn’t on the list for most students when they moved in this fall, so we thought this would be helpful,” said Dr. Mike Valigosky, director of Safety and Health.

If students do have flu-like symptoms, a limited supply of H1N1 kits that include a mask, gloves, thermometer and hand sanitizer also are available in residence halls. Residents concerned about the health of a roommate may request a kit, which includes instructions on how to properly care for a sick person.

The University has received a limited allotment of H1N1 vaccine, and it will be offered first to health-care workers and then to other at-risk groups on campus. To register for the H1N1 vaccine, visit https://h1n1vaccine.odh.ohio.gov. Further information about the vaccination schedule will be forthcoming.

Due to a shortage of the seasonal flu vaccine, it will not be available this year at the Student Medical Center on Main Campus. However, a limited number of seasonal flu vaccinations will be available for people in high-risk categories at the Well-O-Ween Health Fair Friday, Oct. 30, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Student Recreation Center.

For the latest information on H1N1-related information at UT, visit www.utoledo.edu/fluprep.

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