Northwestern University health service officials say an NU student has a confirmed case of H1N1 influenza or swine flu.

Northwestern University health service officials say an NU student has a confirmed case of H1N1 influenza or swine flu.

Officials say the student is an undergraduate who was living on campus, but she returned home after she began to feel ill. She is recovering from her infection without complications.

Following the recently revised CDC guidelines regarding isolation of people who have the flu, the student will be allowed to return to campus 24 hours after she no longer is exhibiting flu-like symptoms or seven days after the onset of the illness, whichever is longer.

Students who live in the same residence as the affected student are being notified.

Northwestern officials say they do not plan to close the school, because the federal Centers for Disease Control and state and local public health officials, do not advise universities to close where swine flu cases have been confirmed.

NU health officials say students, faculty and staff who are feeling ill should stay home and not go to work or classes.

If students have flu-like symptoms, they should go to Northwestern Health Services for testing and treatment. Students on the Evanston campus should consult the Health Services website for information on services, locations and hours.

Faculty and staff should contact their personal physicians for testing and treatment.

The University strongly advises that all students, faculty and staff follow the guidelines of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, including:

  • Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water, especially after you cough or sneeze. Alcohol-based hand cleaners are also effective.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth. Germs spread this way.
  • Try to avoid close contact with sick people.
  • If you get sick with influenza, CDC recommends that you stay home from work or school and limit contact with others to keep from infecting them.

    More information on H1N1 and tips on how to avoid getting sick is available from the CDC website.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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