Campuswide Messages

04.30.10 CHWS is no longer offering the H1N1 vaccine. We will be offering a combined flu shot when it is available late in the fall semester.

11.05.09 H1N1 Flu Update from Counseling, Health, and Wellness Services

There have been 38 suspected but unconfirmed cases of H1N1 flu identified to date (the first on 9.11.09) with 30 active cases at this time. All cases are considered mild and have not required hospitalization. Please be advised of the following to assist you in learning more about campus and other resources devoted to issues related to the H1N1 virus.


Seasonal Flu Vaccines
For Students:
CHWS is no longer offering the seasonal flu shot, but there are several seasonal flu shot clinics in the Tacoma community. Please click on the link at the bottom of the page for additional clinic locations.

For Faculty and Staff:
Staff and faculty can sign up to get the seasonal flu shot at no cost during the upcoming Human Resources annual health fair on Friday, November 13, 2009, in Wheelock Student Center Rotunda by contacting Human Resources at hr@pugetsound.edu or 253.879.3369. Information about seasonal flu vaccines is available on Group Health Web site.


Special Meal Service for Students
Puget Sound students may use a form to order food from the Diner and the Cellar, which can be picked up and delivered by a designated person.

Self Care
For All Members of the Campus Community:

  • Get a flu shot if you are at high risk for one or both of the flu viruses.
  • Wash your hands often.
  • Use alcohol-based hand sanitizers.
  • Cover your mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze or cough into your elbow (not your hands), and throw the tissue into the trash after you use it.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth. Germs are spread this way.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are ill.

For Students:
Students who are ill should communicate with faculty about class absences. For additional assistance, students can contact the Dean of Students Office (253.879.3360) and Academic Advising (253.879.3250). Staff members and student staff members who are ill should contact their supervisors about work absences.

For Faculty and Staff:
Faculty and staff should continue to use self care as the best method for prevention, including staying home if ill. Faculty and staff are also reminded that they should not bring sick children to campus.

The university’s Employee Assistance Program provides resources for childcare and eldercare (and other kinds of support) at www.lifebalance.net; the login and password for Puget Sound are lifebalance and lifebalance.  Another resource that may be helpful is sittercity.com, which is a registry that one can use to locate caregivers within our zip code areas.

We will continue monitoring developments concerning the H1N1 flu virus. Updates will be provided to the campus community as new information becomes available. Information is also available on the Web sites of

Counseling, Health, and Wellness Services, Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department, and the Centers for Disease Control.

This message was also sent by e-mail to faculty, staff, and students.

Sincerely,

Linda M. Everson, R.N., C.,
Director and Medical Coordinator
Counseling, Health, and Wellness Services
University of Puget Sound
1500 North Warner, #1035
Tacoma WA 98416-1035
253.879.1555

10.07.09 H1N1 Flu Update from Counseling, Health, and Wellness Services

Dear Students, Faculty, and Staff,

The H1N1 vaccine will soon be available on campus for students. Per the Centers for Disease Control, priority will be given to pregnant women; household contacts of children 6 months and younger; health care workers; young people from ages 6 months to 24 years; and adults ages 24-64 with underlying health issues.

H1N1 Vaccines
CHWS will offer the attenuated (injectable) H1N1 vaccine for Puget Sound students only. The vaccine has been ordered and is expected to arrive later this month. It will cost $15 and will be available by appointment only in CHWS. This Web page, The Tattler, and other communications will inform students when the vaccine is available and appointments can be scheduled. H1N1 vaccine will also be available at Group Health clinics and drugstores throughout the area.

Seasonal Flu Vaccines for Students
CHWS is no longer offering the seasonal flu shot, but there are several seasonal flu shot clinics in the Tacoma community. 

Seasonal Flu Vaccines for Faculty and Staff
Staff and faculty can sign up to get the seasonal flu shot at no cost during the upcoming Human Resources annual health fair on Friday, November 13, 2009, in Wheelock Student Center Rotunda by contacting Human Resources at hr@pugetsound.edu or 253.879.3369.

Cases Reported to Date
To date, Counseling, Health, and Wellness Services (CHWS) has reported six suspected cases of H1N1. A case is considered "suspected" if a person has tested positive for Influenza A. All reported cases have been mild and have not required hospitalization.

What to Do if You Are Ill
Students who are ill should communicate with faculty about class absences. For additional assistance, students can contact the Dean of Students Office (253.879.3360) and Academic Advising (253.879.3250). Staff members and student staff members who are ill should contact their supervisors about work absences.

Students, faculty, and staff should continue to use self care as the best method for prevention, including getting a flu shot and staying home if ill. Learn more about self care by reading the 09.09.09 message, below.

The university will continue monitoring developments concerning the H1N1 flu virus. Updates will be provided to the campus community as new information becomes available. Information is also available on the Web sites of Counseling, Health, and Wellness Services, Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department www.tpchd.org, and the Centers for Disease Control www.cdc.gov/flu/swine/investigation.htm.

Sincerely,

Linda M. Everson, R.N., C.,
Director and Medical Coordinator
Counseling, Health, and Wellness Services
University of Puget Sound
1500 North Warner, #1035
Tacoma WA 98416-1035
253.879.1555

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09.11.09 H1N1 Flu Update from Counseling, Health, and Wellness Services

Dear Students and Members of the Campus Community,

The University of Puget Sound continues to work closely with students, faculty, and staff in order to provide accurate and timely information about the H1N1 virus. Today Counseling, Health, and Wellness Services (CHWS) has reported two suspected cases of H1N1.

A case is considered "suspected" if a person has tested positive for Influenza A. At this time, CHWS is unable to provide free medical testing specifically for H1N1. CHWS can offer H1N1 testing for students through a private lab at a cost of $318. Students should contact CHWS if they want to schedule a test. The turnaround time for results is about one week.

Students who have flu symptoms should do the following:

• To minimize the risk of exposing others to possible infection, please do not come to CHWS without an appointment; call x1555 to schedule one.

• Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your shirt sleeve when you cough or sneeze. Wash your hands with soap and hot water after you dispose of the tissue.

• After your examination, you may be asked to take a rapid influenza test. Results will be available in 15-20 minutes.

• If you test positive, you will be advised to recuperate by staying in your room. This means not going to classes, athletic events, and social activities until you are fever-free without the help of acetaminophen or ibuprofen for 24 hours. Wear a face mask when you are around roommates and when you need to leave your room to use a common restroom, for medical appointments, or other necessities.

• You should notify the Dean of Students (879-3360) and Academic Advising (879-3250) so that arrangements can be made to accommodate your academic program.

• CHWS needs your written consent to share any information with your parents, the Dean of Students, and professors. You may be asked to sign a release form when you are at CHWS.

• You will want to inform your roommate and those with whom you've had recent close contact, so that they may take steps to minimize the risk of possibly infecting others.

• The flu can last for 1-2 weeks. If possible, students who live nearby should recuperate at home. Travel by private car or taxi to avoid infecting others.

Everyone should use self care as the best method for prevention, including getting a flu shot and staying home if ill. Learn more about self care by reading the 09.09.09 message, below. It is still important for individual members of the campus community to engage in good preventative self-care to reduce the potential for an outbreak here at Puget Sound.

The university will continue monitoring developments concerning the H1N1 flu virus. Updates will be provided to the campus community as new information becomes available. Information is also available on the Web sites of Counseling, Health, and Wellness Services, Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department (www.tpchd.org), and the Centers for Disease Control (www.cdc.gov/flu/swine/investigation.htm).

Sincerely,

Linda M. Everson, R.N., C.,
Director and Medical Coordinator
Counseling, Health, and Wellness Services
University of Puget Sound
1500 North Warner, #1035
Tacoma WA 98416-1035
253.879.1555

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09.09.09 H1N1 Flu Update
As news reports of flu outbreaks on college campuses across the country increase, it is important for individual members of the campus community to engage in good preventative self-care to reduce the potential for an outbreak here at Puget Sound.

The H1N1 flu is known to spread quickly, and can be contracted through an infected person or contact with germs left on surfaces such as tables or door handles for up to several hours. Duration of the H1N1 flu is reported to be anywhere from two days to two weeks.

An H1N1 Task Force has been meeting since last spring to take steps to minimize, to the extent possible, the impact of the flu. The university is in regular contact with the Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department (TPCHD), and is following recommendations of TPCHD and the Centers for Disease Control. There are no known cases of H1N1 flu on campus at this time.

Members of the campus community have received information about H1N1 flu specifically tailored to the needs of students, parents, faculty, and staff. The following information applies to all members of the campus community:

Flu Symptoms
Symptoms of H1N1 flu are similar to the symptoms of seasonal flu and include fever above 100 degrees, cough, sore throat, body aches, headache, chills, and fatigue.

Self-Care
To help keep healthy and avoid the spread of H1N1 or other types of flu:

  • Stay home if you have flu symptoms.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve when you cough or sneeze. Do not cough or sneeze into your hands.
  • Wash hands often with soap and hot water, or use hand sanitizers.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth, as these are pathways for germs to spread.
  • Frequently clean high-touch surfaces at work and at home-keyboards, phones, door handles, etc.
  • Do not share eating utensils, bottles, or other objects that touch your mouth.
  • Get plenty of sleep, eat a well-balanced diet, and exercise regularly for optimum health.

Flu Shots
Season flu shots are available now at CHWS for students, and will be available on campus for faculty and staff on Friday, November 13, in conjunction with the Human Resources annual health fair. Faculty and staff members with Group Health Options coverage for themselves and their family members can find information about Group Health's seasonal flu shot clinics at www.ghc.org/healthAndWellness/?item=/common/healthAndWellness/conditions/coldsAndFlu/flu-clinics.html. Clinics and pharmacies in the community also have seasonal flu vaccines available. A vaccine specifically for H1N1 is expected to be available in mid-October.

The university will continue monitoring developments concerning the H1N1 flu virus. Updates will be provided to the campus community as new information becomes available. Information is also available on the Web sites of Counseling, Health, and Wellness Services, Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department (www.tpchd.org), and the Centers for Disease Control (www.cdc.gov/flu/swine/investigation.htm).

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6.12.09 H1N1 Virus AKA "Swine Flu" Information
The recent spread of the new and unique influenza A virus, known as H1N1, has received much publicity. This virus is commonly referred to as "swine flu." H1N1 has now spread to humans worldwide, and is found in all states in the United States. It can be transmitted from human to human the same way the seasonal flu or a cold is transmitted. The virus causes symptoms similar to those of the seasonal flu. While H1N1 does continue to spread, it is causing less severe disease than experts initially expected.

At CHWS, we continue to keep abreast of current developments regarding H1N1. We have access to campus wide and state communication and emergency response systems, should there be a need to use these resources. In the meantime, please use the following links to keep informed of the most recent and accurate information. If you have symptoms, or have specific concerns that are not addressed here, please call your primary care provider. Students in the Tacoma area who are experiencing symptoms, but do not have a primary care provider, may wish to consult local resources.

More Information
Pandemic Flu: www.pandemicflu.gov
Pierce County Health Department: www.tpchd.org
Centers for Disease Control: www.cdc.gov/flu/swine/investigation.htm
Travel Advisories: www.cdc.gov/travel/contentSwineFluUS.aspx
World Health Organization: www.who.int
Washington State Department of Health: www.doh.wa.gov/h1n1

For Faculty and Staff
Unum Life Balance: www.lifebalance.net (user ID and password are "lifebalance")
Group Health Cooperative: www.ghc.org/provider/flu/swineFlu.jhtml
Medex Travel Assistance Program: http://www.medexassist.com

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05.07.09 Message to the Campus Community Regarding the H1N1 Virus ("Swine Flu")

As we head into finals week and graduation, I write to advise you of the latest updates on the H1N1 virus, also known as "swine flu." As of 3 p.m. today, there is one confirmed case of H1N1 influenza reported in Pierce County. There are 23 confirmed cases in Washington state, and 46 probable cases, which means that a positive influenza test has been reported in a patient who has significant illness and exposure through travel. The Center for Disease Control is now performing more definitive testing to confirm or rule out H1N1 influenza in those cases.

Confirmatory testing will soon be performed at the Washington state lab, and it is likely there will be a significant increase in the number of confirmed cases reported in the state, as the back log of testing is completed locally. This will not indicate that there is a change in the new cases or the severity of the H1N1 influenza. The H1N1flu is still considered to be mild to moderate in severity with symptoms that are similar to the annual seasonal influenza.

We are regularly monitoring the CDC H1N1 Web site and are communicating regularly with the Pierce County Health Department. The CDC is not currently recommending that colleges, universities, or post-secondary educational institutions cancel or dismiss classes or other large gatherings. At this time, all Puget Sound campus events are planned to take place as scheduled. Any change in plans will be posted to the Web site and communicated by e-mail.

The CDC and Pierce County Health Department continue to recommend preventive strategies. They do advise that those who are sick stay home and away from large gatherings, and limit contact with others to prevent spreading infection.

It is important that all members of the campus community take reasonable precautions, especially if you have recently traveled (in the past 7-10 days) or been in contact with individuals from affected areas.

Students should contact CHWS, 253.879.1555, if they experience any of the following symptoms, which are similar to those of many other viruses: temperature of 101.3 or higher, sore throat, cough with difficulty breathing, nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea.

Faculty and staff should contact their local health care provider and notify CHWS if you are diagnosed with swine flu.

Please continue to maintain good self-care practices, including maintaining adequate rest and nutrition, covering your mouth with the crook of your elbow if you must sneeze or cough, and washing hands frequently with hot, soapy water.

More Information
Pandemic Flu: www.pandemicflu.gov
Pierce County Health Department: www.tpchd.org
Centers for Disease Control: www.cdc.gov/flu/swine/investigation.htm
Travel Advisories: www.cdc.gov/travel/contentSwineFluUS.aspx
World Health Organization: www.who.int
Washington State Department of Health: http://www.doh.wa.gov/h1n1

For faculty and staff members:
Unum Life Balance: www.lifebalance.net (user ID and password are "lifebalance")
Group Health Cooperative: www.ghc.org/provider/flu/swineFlu.jhtml
Medex Travel Assistance Program: www.medexassist.com

Linda Everson, R.N., C.
Director and Medical Coordinator
Counseling, Health, and Wellness Services

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 5.1.09 Message to the Campus Community Regarding the H1N1 Virus ("Swine Flu")

As we head into the weekend, I write to advise you of the latest updates on the H1N1 virus, also known as "swine flu." As of noon today, there are no confirmed cases of H1N1 influenza in Pierce County. There are 10 probable cases in Washington state, which means that a positive influenza test has been reported in a patient who has significant illness and exposure through travel. The Center for Disease Control is now performing more definitive testing to confirm or rule out H1N1 influenza in those cases. There are also three cases in nearby Lakewood, which are classified as suspected cases, indicating that the influenza testing is in progress. The administration of Lakes High School in Lakewood has made the decision to close the school in consultation with the health department.

I met with officials at the Pierce County Health Department this morning, and they continue to recommend "preparedness without panic" and preventive strategies. They do advise that those who are sick stay home and limit contact with others to prevent spreading infection.

It is important that all members of the campus community take reasonable precautions, especially if you have recently traveled (in the past 7-10 days) or been in contact with individuals from affected areas.

Students should contact Counseling, Health, and Wellness Services (CHWS), 253.879.1555, if you experience any of the following symptoms, which are similar to those of many other viruses:

  • temperature of 101.3 or higher
  • sore throat
  • cough with difficulty breathing
  • nausea
  • vomiting
  • diarrhea

Faculty and staff should contact your local health care provider and notify CHWS if you are diagnosed with swine flu.

Please continue to maintain good self-care practices, including maintaining adequate rest and nutrition, covering your mouth with the crook of your elbow if you must sneeze or cough, and washing hands frequently with hot, soapy water.

More Information

For faculty and staff members:

Linda Everson, R.N., C.
Director and Medical Coordinator
Counseling, Health, and Wellness Services

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04.28.09 Message to the Campus Community Regarding the H1N1 Virus ("Swine Flu")

As you may be aware from recent news reports, there is evidence that an outbreak of swine flu in Mexico City has spread to the United States, with documented cases in California, Kansas, Ohio, New York, and Texas. At this time, there are no reported cases in Washington State.

Counseling, Health, and Wellness Services (CHWS) is monitoring the spread of the disease and is prepared in the event that the disease occurs on campus or in the Tacoma area. We advise the campus community to maintain good self-care practices to reduce the threat or spread of this or other diseases.

Diagnosis and Treatment
Swine flu can spread rapidly from one person to another, and might also be contracted by touching objects such as door knobs or keyboards. It cannot be contracted from eating pork. The illness is responsive to anti-viral medication within the first 48 hours, and is thought to be contagious the day before symptoms develop and for seven days afterwards. For this reason, it is important that all members of the campus community take reasonable precautions, especially if you have recently traveled (past 7-10 days) or been in contact with individuals from affected areas.

Students should contact CHWS, 253.879.1555, if you experience any of the following symptoms, which are similar to those of many other viruses:

  • temperature of 101.3 or higher
  • sore throat
  • cough with difficulty breathing
  • nausea
  • vomiting
  • diarrhea

Faculty and staff should contact your local health care provider and notify CHWS if you are diagnosed with swine flu.

Prevention
Good self-care habits include:

  • maintaining adequate rest and nutrition
  • washing hands frequently with hot, soapy water
  • staying four to five feet away from a person who is ill
  • covering your mouth with the crook of your elbow if you must sneeze or cough
  • properly disposing of tissues

If you are sick, please limit your contact with others.

More Information
More information on the outbreak of swine flu is available from the Pierce County Health Department and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention:

Students may contact Counseling, Health, and Wellness with any questions or concerns. Faculty and staff members, if you have questions, please contact your health care provider.

Linda Everson, R.N., C.
Director and Medical Coordinator
Counseling, Health, and Wellness Services