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Letter to Jr./Sr. High School Parents/Guardians regarding Viral Meningitis

October 12, 2017

Dear SBEP Parent/Guardian:

 We were informed today that a staff member was diagnosed with viral meningitis. While this can be concerning to you as a parent, the chance of your child or you becoming ill with this disease is very small. Viral meningitis is not the same as bacterial meningitis. People who get viral meningitis usually recover completely with rest and fever-reducing medicine. The following information will help you understand viral meningitis: 

• Viral meningitis can occur throughout the year, but is most common in the summer and fall. People of any age can get viral meningitis, but it is more frequent in children.
• Viral meningitis is a serious but rarely fatal illness in persons with normal immune systems. It produces inflammation of the tissues that cover the brain and spinal cord. Usually the symptoms last from 7 to 10 days and the person recovers completely.
• About 90% of viral meningitis cases are due to common stomach viruses called enteroviruses. Enteroviruses are passed from person to person through saliva or a contaminated surfaces, but most people who come in contact with enteroviruses do not develop an infection. This is because their immune system fights the virus successfully.
• Getting infected with one of the germs that can cause viral meningitis does not automatically mean a person will get meningitis. In most cases, the germ will simply cause a cold, upset stomach or diarrhea.
• There is no specific prevention for viral meningitis. However, good personal hygiene, such as frequent hand washing, can reduce the chances of catching viral meningitis and other illnesses.
• Antibiotics are not effective against viruses. 

If you have any questions or would like additional information, please contact your family doctor or the Cincinnati Department of Health at (513) 946-7849 ext. 7887. You can also call me at (513) 482-7100 or e- mail me at rreynolds@sbepschools.org if I can be of any help. If there are any other developments regarding this situation, I will let you know right away.

Sincerely,

Robert A. Reynolds
Principal-St. Bernard Elmwood Place Jr./Sr. High School

 

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St. Bernard-Elmwood Place High School