EVANS, Ga. (WJBF) – With colder temperatures coming in, more children are catching viruses in daycares and schools that could have serious impacts.
“We’ve had a couple RSV cases that have been very serious, especially for our infants,” said Ashley Williams, the director of Cornerstone Academy Christian Childcare and Preschool. “We try to stay ahead of that as much as we can, but the severity of them has really increased.”
According to the CDC, RSV causes 100 to 300 deaths in children under 5-years-old every year.
This virus, along with COVID, the flu and other easily transmittable viruses, are the spreading throughout schools.
“So we’re seeing it’s taking children longer to recover, and they tend to have higher fevers,” Williams said. “It’s been rougher on them than in previous years.”
She even said that the infant room at Cornerstone that usually has 12 infants, only had four infants in it a few weeks ago due to RSV.
“Once it starts to spread it just kind of goes through because it’s spread airborne,” Williams said. “But we do isolation and try to make sure that we’re limiting contact as much as possible.”
To combat the germs, Cornerstone Academy has been using air purifiers and has been using daily sanitation protocols.
If a child tests positive for any of these viruses, they have to be fever free without medication for 24 hours to return to school.
“If your kid’s sick, keep him at home. Get a flu shot if you have kids that are six months and older, that’s super important,” said Lisa Whitlock, the director of school health at the Columbia County Board of Education. “Because it takes about two weeks for it to become effective. So it’s very important to get a flu shot now.”
The Columbia County Health Department is offering free flu, COVID, MCV4 and Tdap vaccinations tomorrow for students from 5-7 p.m.