December 8, 2019

Employee at Passaic Schools in New Jersey Has Hepatitis A

A high school cafeteria employee in the Passaic, New Jersey schools has been diagnosed with hepatitis A, according to a letter sent to parents by the Passaic New Jersey Superintendent of Schools. Anyone who bought food from the Passaic High School teacher's cafeteria between January 15 and January 30, 2015 may have been exposed to the virus. The High School has been thoroughly cleaned to disinfect the building. Hepatitis A is a virus that causes injury to the liver. The virus is shed in the feces of the infected person. When a person with the virus doesn't wash their hands after using the bathroom, the feces and virus can get into food or drink they have prepared. When someone else eats or drinks those products, they can get sick; this is called the "fecal-oral" transmission. Direct … [Read more...]

Norovirus Outbreak at Hampstead, NH Schools

A norovirus outbreak has been reported at the Hampstead Central and Middle Schools in Hampstead, New Hampshire. The school is posting a daily tally on the number of students sick with a "stomach bug".  Norovirus is also called viral gastroenteritis. The school calls the outbreak "significant numbers of students and absences." Staff members are enacting precautions in classrooms, and the custodians are increasing cleaning procedures. At least 60 students were sick last week. New cases were reported yesterday. Norovirus is a very contagious virus. Cases increase during the cold winter months because more people are together inside. The symptoms of norovirus include vomiting, diarrhea, nausea, and stomach cramps. Fever is usually mild or absent. Most people recover within 1-2 days, but … [Read more...]

Norovirus Sickens Dozens at Condon Elementary School in Boston

About 140 students and 10 staff members at Condon Elementary School in Boston have been sickened with suspected norovirus this week, according to CBS Boston. The principal of that school sent a message to parents Tuesday, telling them about the outbreak. Norovirus is a highly contagious virus. Outbreaks typically increase in the colder months, when more people spend more time indoors. Symptoms include diarrhea, vomiting, and stomach and abdominal pain. The illness usually lasts for a few days. Teams were cleaning the school to try to stop the spread of the illness. Officials are asking parents to keep their children home from school if they are ill, and to keep them home until they have been completely symptom-free for 24 hours. To prevent the spread of norovirus, always wash your … [Read more...]

Sunny Delight, Others Asked to Stop Marketing In-School Junk Food

Center for Science in the Public Interest has asked Sunny Delight, maker of Sunny D beverage, to stop a program that encourages parents, teachers, and students to collect 20 labels of the product in exchange for foods. CSPI said that Sunny D "encourages families to consume a drink that promotes diabetes, weight gain, and other health problems." The beverage only includes 5% juice; the remaining ingredients are sugar; artificial sweeteners sucralose, acesulfame potassium, and neotame; high fructose corn syrup; sodium benzoate; dyes Yellow 5 and Yellow 6; and water, along with vitamins and other ingredients such as xanthan gum and canola oil. A 16-ounce bottle of Sunny D Tangy Original has almost 7 teaspoons of sugar. CSPI nutrition policy director Margo G. Wootan said in a statement, … [Read more...]

Outbreak at Groveland Elementary School in Minnesota

The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) is investigating an outbreak of gastrointestinal illness at the Groveland Elementary School in Minnetonka, Minnesota, according to WCCO. There is no mention of the outbreak on the MDH web site or the Groveland School web site. At least 46 students and four staff members missed school because of illness on Thursday, May 1, 2014, and another 21 stayed home on Friday. There is no word on any whether any of the patients have been hospitalized as a result of their illness. The source of the possible outbreak is not known, and officials do not know whether the illnesses are caused by norovirus or bacteria. The building was disinfected on Thursday, and then on Friday for a second time. The city of Minnetonka and the Hennepin County Health … [Read more...]

Norovirus Outbreak Closes Virginia School

An elementary school in Alexandria, Virginia closed last week after more than 200 students and 30 staff members were sickened with gastroenteritis symptoms. Local health officials believe the cause is norovirus, which is easily spread and very contagious. The school was closed on March 14, 2014 for cleaning and to have all shared surfaces disinfected. The school sent a letter to parents to tell them that some students experienced nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea on Wednesday, but when many more students became ill, they decided to close on Friday. The school was cleaned with a bleach and water solution, and the heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems were turned off. HVAC units filters will be changed as part of the cleaning process. To help prevent the spread of … [Read more...]

Outbreak at Waipahu Elementary School in Hawaii was Food Poisoning

Public health officials in Hawaii are confirming that the outbreak of illness at the Waipahu Elementary School in Oahu last week was food poisoning. Apparently, spaghetti cooked the day before wasn't properly reheated the day it was served, which created an environment for bacterial growth. Carbohydrates such as spaghetti and rice can contain bacteria. When they are cooked, bacterial spores are activated. When the foods are not properly refrigerated and reheated to a safe temperature, bacteria can easily grow. Peter Oshiro, head of the Department of Health Sanitation Branch said in a statement, "an inspection and interviews with cafeteria employees revealed food preparation violations that could be corrected with proper training and follow through." More than thirty children were … [Read more...]

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