With colleges and universities across Jamaica reopening this week followed by high schools next week, the Ministry of Health urges citizens to be vigilant about their personal hygiene. As of Friday, August 28, the Ministry reports that there are 81 cases of the flu. According to the WHO, a second wave of H1N1 is very possible and urges people to continue taking necessary precautions.
Here are a few steps that we can take to protect ourselves.
- Wash hands frequently and long with soap and water(for as long as you can sing the ABC song, one site suggests)
- Use alcohol-based sanitizers to wash hands if soap and water are not available
- Cough into shoulders or elbows, not into your hands.
- Keep away from crowds—sporting events, malls
- Don’t hug people
- Use disinfectant wipes to clean public computer keyboards and musical instruments, especially pianos if played on by several people.
- Keeps hands away from your face (eyes, nose, mouth)
At the first sign of flu-like symptoms, people who fall into the “high risk” category should seek medical intervention as soon as possible. These people are:
- Pregnant women
- Obese people
- People suffering from hypertension
- Children under five years old.
Here are a few sites that you may consult for alerts, availability of vaccines, and further tips on staying healthy: