Norovirus Update in #DavisCa

If possible interest :

NOROVIRUS UPDATE

May 19, 2017

DJUSD Parents and Guardians,

The following is updated information about the recent outbreak of the Norovirus in our region and school district.

What is the Norovirus?

According to County Health officials, Norovirus is a highly contagious gastrointestinal virus. Symptoms may include stomach cramps, fever, nauseau, vomiting and diarrhea. The virus is passed through touching surfaces contaminated with the virus, close contact with an infected person or eating contaminated food or drink. County Health experts report that the spread of virus is continuing and encourage the public to take extra precautions to curb the spread. Visit Yolo County Norovirus website and Press Releases.

What should I do to protect myself and others from the virus?

There are three key actions you can take to help prevent the spread of Norovirus:

  1. Report absences related to stomach illness symptoms to your school office.
  2. Encourage the practice of regular hand washing, especially before meals.
  3. Stay home an additional 48 hours after symptoms resolve. (Health experts warn that individuals are still highly contagious in this timeframe.)

Has the Norovirus affected Davis schools?

Norovirus cases have been confirmed in our schools. Over the last two weeks, the numbers of new cases do not appear to be growing rapidly. We continue to see reported absences across the district, but the attendance rates are generally remaining steady. That said, because this virus outbreak is highly contagious and the County Health experts have told us the spread has not peaked, we anticipate we will continue to see Norovirus absences throughout the end of the school year. Certain school campuses have reported more staff or student cases than others, but, at this time, the virus is not disrupting normal school operations at any campus.

What is DJUSD doing to protect schools and students?

DJUSD is taking a three-pronged approach to addressing the current health situation:

  1. Daily Monitoring of Possible Cases and Regional Coordination

Over the last two weeks, our schools have have been tracking absences of students and employees with symptoms that may be caused by the Norovirus. Lead district adminstrators have been monitoring the numbers and trends as well as particpating in regular teleconferences led by Yolo County officials to talk about regional trends, cleaning recommendations, health updates and recommendations.

  1. Disinfecting and Deep Cleaning Efforts across Campuses and in Targeted Areas

Ensuring that we keep students and school learning environments safe and clean is a top priority. DJUSD is diligently deploying extra resources to combat the spread of the Norovirus in our schools with the use of proper disinfecting agents. By tracking new cases on a daily basis and coordinating with county and federal entities about proper chemical use, we are able to target additional resources appropriately and effectively. Custodians are working throughout the day to respond to calls as well as to cleanse and disinfect high contact point surfaces (doorknobs, restrooms, water fountains, keypads, etc.) Additionally, our maintenance team is deploying crews to schools for evening and weekend deep cleaning.

  1. Education and Communication to Employees and the School Community

Keeping the community up to date on the current situation is a priority. DJUSD has issued a series of updates for employees and school site leaders. In addition to this communication, an update went out to all DJUSD parents/guardians early last week. Updates, press releases and information from County Health continue to be shared on themclayton.

About Jonathan Eisen

I am an evolutionary biologist and a Professor at U. C. Davis. (see my lab site here). My research focuses on the origin of novelty (how new processes and functions originate). To study this I focus on sequencing and analyzing genomes of organisms, especially microbes and using phylogenomic analysis

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