Centenary's H1N1 Policy

The protocols Centenary has designed for future occurrences and the procedures we have already instituted in response to H1N1 are consistent with the most recent Guidance for Responses to Influenza circulated by the Centers for Disease Control.  

Thus far, Centenary has implemented an educative program to alert the Centenary community to symptoms of Flu and common sense ways of avoiding it. The College’s housekeepers have already switched the cleaning supplies to those certified to eradicate H1N1.  Automatic hand sanitizers which dispense foamy hand cleanser certified to respond to H1N1 are being installed at the entrances to every major building.  

Staff and Faculty have been urged to remain home if they are experiencing flu-like symptoms.  The guardians of school aged children have been reminded of the inappropriateness of bringing a sick child to campus. 

The implementation of our future plans is gradual and targeted, based on the severity of H1N1 within the Institution and the need to maintain the safety of our people and animals.  Our plans include ‘Social Distancing,’ ‘Self-Isolation,’ (generally at a student’s home), appropriate medical care and alternate attendance policies and teaching modalities.  

Ninety percent of Centenary students live less than four hours from home.  If those students become symptomatic, they will be released to their families if they can get home without using public transportation.  The few others will be isolated in a currently empty on-campus house that will comfortably facilitate their recovery.  Access to the house will be limited to designated caregivers during the time of recovery.

We will register for the ‘VFC-like Program’ to acquire vaccines.  As the CDC makes vaccines available to the State, we will fulfill the State’s distribution requirements and administer the vaccine to those who wish to receive it. It is our understanding at this time that there will be no cost for the vaccination.  

A student will be expected in class and participating or at home completing their assignments through Blackboard, the College’s On-Line system. Faculty are prepared to post assignments and conduct classes through alternative means, should it become necessary.  Since the CDC prefers that ill persons avoid the Doctor’s Offices and emergency rooms, we will not be requiring notes for absence provided the student has informed the Dean of Students Office that he/she will be recovering at home or is in the “self-isolation” location. 

The various constituencies of the College have together defined appropriate thresholds of symptomatic students for various activities. The ‘achievement’ of a common sense number or percentage of sick students within a particular group will result in pre-defined limits on social interactions.  Examples of such include closing athletic events to spectators, postponing events and modifying the delivery of sponsored student activity events. 

An immediately noticeable change from the initial CDC Guidance involves the complete closure of an Institution.  The CDC now finds such a response to be more harmful to the social fabric than useful in the diminution of the Virus.  At this time, Centenary concurs with that understanding. 

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