Thursday, May 7, 2009

Swine Flu Blown Way Out of Proportion

Allow me to vent my frustration over the exacerbating hysteria over swine flu. Don't get me wrong, at the beginning I was all in favor of the CDC's recommendations to close schools and cancel activities to prevent a larger outbreak. Read this post I wrote last week about Garrett's field trip being cancelled. I was totally cool with it. And I was also supportive of the CDC's new recommendation to not cancel school since swine flu does not appear to be any more dangerous than the seasonal flu.

But I found out the hard way today that there is a new policy in place at Garrett's school (and district), because of the swine flu hysteria, that requires any child that has been sick for any reason to have a doctor's note to come back to school. Garrett spiked a fever yesterday of 102. He had been having diarrhea for the past 24 hours but that is now over. So this morning, I called the school and reported Garrett sick. No problem, right? I just have to wait until he is fever free for 24 hours (and diarrhea free, which he seems to be now), and he'd be back at school. But nooooooo!! The school nurse called me this morning and informed me that Garrett needs a doctor's note to come back. The doctor has to certify that he doesn't have swine flu. Last time I checked, swine flu included respiratory symptoms, which Garrett does not have. In fact, I called the nurse at Garrett's pediatrician yesterday just to make sure his symptoms did not sound like swine flu. She assured me that just a fever does not swine flu make.

Now, I had no intention of taking Garrett to the doctor for just a fever and a slight case of diarrhea. A little Tylenol and a bland diet and he should be good as new in a couple days. But common sense has completely taken a back seat to hysteria, and now I have to drag a sick kid half way across town and possibly expose him to swine flu at the doctor's office, just to prove that he doesn't have swine flu. It makes no sense at all.

This picture is a good metaphor for what I think of the swine flu hysteria now.

Swine flu is a real entity that is so full of hot air that is has been blown completely out of proportion.

I'll let you know how the doctor's appointment goes tomorrow.

Thanks for letting me vent.


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Julia said...

I feel your annoyance at this. Things are not so strict in our area. I think the initial caution was warranted but once the virulence was determined to be not so virulent they should downgrade the whole thing! You must want to say AAAGGGGGGHHHHHH!!!!!

Anonymous said...

So is Garrett back in school? G'ma Collins