August 31, 2009
Dear students, employees, and parents,
The flu season will last through the fall and winter. More than one kind of flu virus will be spreading this season, including seasonal flu and the 2009 H1N1 (swine) flu. Trevecca’s administration encourages all students, faculty, and employees to follow these recommendations to stay healthy.
As you may know, flu can be spread easily from person to person. Therefore, University personnel and medical staff are taking steps to prevent the spread of flu at Trevecca Nazarene University for as long as possible, but, we need your help to accomplish this goal.
We are working closely with the Metro Nashville Health Department to monitor flu conditions and make decisions about the best steps to take concerning our institution. We will keep you updated with new information as it becomes available to us.
For now, we are doing everything we can to keep our institution operating as usual. Here are a few things you can do to help:
- Practice good hand hygiene by washing your hands with soap and water, especially after coughing or sneezing. Alcohol-based hand cleaners also are effective.
- Practice respiratory etiquette by covering your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. If you don’t have a tissue, cough or sneeze into your elbow or shoulder, not into your hands. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth; flu is spread this way.
- Know the signs and symptoms of the flu. A fever is a temperature taken with a thermometer that is equal to or greater than 100 degrees Fahrenheit or 38 degrees Celsius. Look for possible signs of fever: the person feels very warm, has a flushed appearance, or is sweating or shivering.
- Stay home if you have flu or flu-like illness for at least 24 hours after you no longer have a fever (100 degrees Fahrenheit or 38 degrees Celsius) or signs of a fever (have chills, feel very warm, have a flushed appearance, or are sweating). This condition should naturally occur—in other words, it should not be the result of your use of fever-reducing medications (any medicine that contains ibuprofen or acetaminophen). Don’t go to class or work if you still have a fever.
- Talk with your health care providers about whether you should be vaccinated for seasonal flu. Also if you are at higher risk for flu complications from 2009 H1N1 flu, you should consider getting the H1N1 vaccine when it becomes available. People at higher risk for 2009 H1N1 flu complications include pregnant women and people with chronic medical conditions (such as asthma, heart disease, or diabetes). For more information about priority groups for vaccination, visit www.cdc.gov/h1n1flu/vaccination/acip.htm.
Here are the steps Trevecca Nazarene University is currently taking to address this potential threat:
- We are in the process of installing alcohol-based hand cleaners in residence halls, cafeteria, the Hub, the Cube, computer labs, wellness center, and selected restrooms. We strongly urge employees and students to use these cleaners as needed. In addition we are installing alcohol-based wipes in computer labs for students to wipe down keyboards before each use.
- Environmental Services will be wiping down doorknobs, lab computer keyboards, handrails, and desks with an alcohol-based cleaner as a normal routine cleaning function effective immediately.
- The clinic has ordered 500 doses of the H1N1 vaccine. At this time we do not have an expected date of delivery although the current thought is that the vaccine might be available by mid-October.
- Posters will be placed in the residence halls to affirm the actions that students are to take.
- Doctors’ notes will not be required for employees or students who stay at home with fevers in excess of 100 degrees Fahrenheit. We want all employees to stay at home if they have a fever.
- If students are sick with a fever, please stay in your room or do not come to campus if you are a commuter student. Contact your RA or RD if you are sick.
- If you are a residential student who lives within a reasonable driving distance, you are strongly encouraged to go home if you have a fever.
- Alcohol-based wipes and masks will be provided to students who are running fevers in excess of 100 degrees Fahrenheit.
- If your roommate is sick, please work with your RA or RD to deliver food from the cafeteria to your roommate. Wear the provided masks. Wipe down surfaces with the provided wipes.
If this year’s flu season becomes more severe, we will take additional appropriate steps to prevent the spread of the virus.
For more information about flu in our community and what our institution is doing, visit www.trevecca.edu or call ext 1261.
For the most up-to-date information on flu, visit www.flu.gov, or call 1-800-CDC-INFO (232-4636).
We will notify you by e-mail and Trevecca’s web site of any additional changes to our institution’s strategy to prevent the spread of flu on our campus.
The President’s Cabinet
Trevecca Nazarene University