QU is just being safe with H1N1

By on November 11, 2009

The H1N1 is not your average flu.

My roommate was sent home a few weeks ago with flu-like symptoms. I say flu-like, because his symptoms were far worse than the average flu. He was bedridden for days, dealt with temperature chills, and eventually caught pneumonia because his immune system was so weak. Three weeks later, he still is not 100 percent.

But don’t take my word for it, or my roommate’s.

Take Dr. Keiji Fukuda’s word. A representative of the World Health Organization (WHO), Fukuda continues to tell the public not to treat this virus like just another flu. Almost half a million people have been diagnosed with the H1N1 virus, and more than 6,000 have died from it, WHO reports.

The fact is, as director of Quinnipiac’s crisis management team Joe Rubertone said, we have a “public health issue.” For a while, it seemed as if the H1N1 threat had dissipated. But in what seemed like a matter of hours, the “isolation zone” was opened, students were lined up outside of Health Services, and friends were being sent home left and right.

This is not at all an overreaction of Quinnipiac University, but a demonstration of just how contagious the H1N1 virus is.

Quinnipiac has been working closely with the Connecticut Department of Health, and continues to follow Center for Disease Control (CDC) protocol. The CDC advises students who are feeling ill at colleges and universities to “stay away from classes and limit interactions with other people.” If close contact cannot be avoided, students and employees are told to wear a surgical mask.

The CDC also encourages hand hygiene, and some would contend that Quinnipiac has gone overboard in providing students with hand sanitizer, doling out free containers as if it were Halloween candy.

Quinnipiac is leaps and bounds ahead of other universities. (Rubertone told The Chronicle that some schools were simply advising their students to sleep head to toe to avoid getting the virus). They are taking extra precautionary measures to make sure this virus does not get out of hand. And if not proactively dealt with, the virus will, undoubtedly, get out of hand.

We are better safe than sorry, and better healthy than ill.

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