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Health Department Offers Back to School Health Tips

Kids are back in school, and as always they're exposed to germs and potential illnesses like the flu. But before the year gets too busy officials say it's time to start thinking about back to school health.

WASHINGTON COUNTY, Md - Kids are back in school and as always they're exposed to germs and potential illnesses like the flu. But before the year gets too busy officials say it's time to start thinking about back to school health.

The Washington County Health Department has a few suggestions that can help parents keep their students healthy this school year.

First, make sure your student has all the standard childhood vaccines.

"Measles, mumps, rubella. The Maryland State Department of Education has a list of requirements that is readily available for people to access on the internet or via telephone," said Rod MacRae with the Washington County Health Department.

Next prepare for flu season earlier than later.

At the Washington County Health Department employees are already getting their flu shots. Officials say it's never too early to start thinking about vaccines.

"The flu vaccination is something that works both ways," said MacRae. "Number one, protects the individual but number two, it protects those around the individual so they're not spreading illness to people who may be more vulnerable they are."

And now there are more public places like drug stores offering flu shots.

"People have a much greater flexibility of getting their vaccinations while they go about their normal life without going out of their way and making that point," said MacRae.

And finally, simple everyday prevention like good nutrition and maintaining your personal hand hygiene.

"Well hand sanitizers are really a good way for people to protect themselves from the flu or any other common cold and other times of person to person disease. It's readily available," said MacRae.

The Washington County Health Department will offer flu shots later this season, they can also help you to determine if your child has received all of the necessary immunizations.

For more information about back to school vaccinations, check out the Washington County Health Department and the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene websites.


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