ROCHESTER, Minn. - Winter break is coming to a close for students but before they return to class parents are being asked to
take precautions against the flu.
With elementary school and high school kids being high risk for the flu parents are asked to wash their child's backpack to stop the spread. It’s a simple task that can help make a big difference in the classroom.
For parents like Frannie Taysavang the flu is more than a nuisance, it can have deadly consequences.
Taysavang explained, “My oldest son is 13 and he's a type 1 diabetic and a simple cold or anything can put him in the emergency room. We've had to go to the emergency room many times just for something simple.”
Taysavang says her children are home schooled, but even so, having a son with a compromised immune system means the world during flu season is terrifying.
“Even though you protect yourself there's always going to be chinks in the armor if other people aren't being protected as well,” she added.
John Hopkins Medicine says on average elementary school kids get six to eight colds each school year.
It’s something mother of two, Carla Laudy, has experienced first hand.
“I worry because when (my daughter) was little she was hospitalized for the flu. It just gets scary because they refuse to eat, they refuse to drink and they don't understand what the consequences of that are.”
So to prevent the spread of flu A, B and strep parents can wash their child’s backpack before they return to school after winter break. Laudy says it’s a preventative measure she’s already taken.
She said, ““We wash their coats, washed their backpacks.. we washed them!”
If parents aren't able to wash their child's backpack health officials ask they at least sanitize them with a disinfectant product to protect other students from becoming ill.