H1N1 (Swine) Flu Emergency Preparedness
In the event of an illness, RIT students should contact the Student Health Center immediately at (585) 475-2255. Students should also follow instructions of their own doctor. If the illness persists, it is also recommended that students notify their academic advisor.
Here are some tips for students, as well as a list of suggested illness/flu supplies.
Tips for Students
Practice general illness prevention by: getting enough rest, eating a nutritious diet, avoiding others who are ill (as much as possible), washing hands frequently and by practicing proper respiratory “etiquette” by covering coughs.
- “Wash it”-Hands should be washed with soap and water for at least 15-20 seconds (the time it takes to sing the Happy Birthday song twice) or with alcohol (at least 60%) based hand sanitizer by rubbing the hands together until the gel dries. Make sure soap and/or hand sanitizer are available in the bathrooms.
- “Cover it”-Cover your cough/sneeze to prevent spreading viruses through the air. The best way is to cough into your elbow—this avoids contaminating the hands with the virus. The other way is to cough into a tissue, discard the tissue in the trash and then wash hands as outlined above.
- “Get it”-Get a flu shot.
The SHC holds a seasonal flu shot clinic each fall. The flu vaccine is
advised for all students,
particularly those living in close contact with others in a residence hall
but especially those at higher
risk for developing complications from the flu:
- Those with chronic illnesses such as heart disease, asthma and diabetes.
- Those taking medications that weaken the immune system.
- Those on chronic aspirin therapy (due to the risk of Reye’s Syndrome).
- A vaccine is being developed for the H1N1 flu. It may be available by this fall—the campus will be alerted if/when it is available for students.
- The CDC is emphasizing “self isolation” to prevent the spread of H1N1 flu. If you become ill with a flu like illness (fever 100 F or higher, sore throat, cough, body aches) stay away from others—no class, no mingling in crowds until fever free for 24 hours without the use of fever reducing medication. Someone may need to assist you with getting meals, fluids and medications.
- Most otherwise healthy people will recover from the flu (seasonal and H1N1) without problems. The CDC recommends reserving treatment with anti-viral medication (Tamiflu and Relenza) for those who are hospitalized or those at higher risk of developing complications from the flu as noted above. To be effective, the medication must be started within 48 hours of the onset of the illness. Students can be evaluated in the Student Health Center to see if anti-viral medication will offer any benefit.
- If your roommate has the flu, especially if you are at higher risk of developing complications from the flu, speak with a Student Health Center provider ASAP to see if you should take anti-viral medication to prevent the flu.
List of Suggested Illness/Flu Supplies
The CDC recommends “self isolation” for those who are ill, particularly with a flu like illness (sudden onset, fever 100 F or higher, body aches, headache, cough, sore throat and possible nausea and vomiting) which means avoiding going out into public places—classes, stores, restaurants and cafeterias—to avoid spreading infection to others. The CDC recommends that people with flu-like illness remain at home until at least 24 hours after they are free of fever or signs of fever without the use of fever-reducing medicine. The SHC recommends that students be prepared for the possibility that they may be confined to their rooms for a period of time. It would be prudent to have some basic supplies on hand. Also-students should consider their options for off campus housing (returning home, staying with friends/relatives) in the unlikely event of a campus closure.
- Disposable tissues
- Hand sanitizer (at least 60% alcohol)
- Fluids such as tea, water, packets of Gatorade, packets of ramen noodles or chicken soup and juice.
- A disposable or digital thermometer
- Salt for salt water gargling for sore throat
- Honey—alone or mixed in tea for sore throat and coughs
- Acetaminophen (Tylenol) and /or Ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin, Nuprin) for fever and aches. Follow dosing guidelines carefully to avoid excessive amounts.
- Pseudoephedrine (Sudafed—the kind you have to ask for at the pharmacy counter, not Sudafed PE) for nasal congestion
- Aspirin- due to the risk of Reye’s Syndrome.
- Combination cold remedies—most of these contain Acetaminophen and can lead to taking excessive doses of medicine.
- Over the counter cough medicines—these are usually not very effective. A student with a significant cough should be evaluated in the SHC.
- Zinc lozenges, Airborne—not proven to be effective
When in doubt, contact the SHC for advice about self care. If you think you need to be seen, contact SHC to make an appointment. Students who experience significant cough, worsening of chronic asthma symptoms, fever that lasts > 2-3 days, dizziness and/or dehydration should be examined. If symptoms are severe and the student needs urgent assistance, contact Public Safety.
Student Health Center: (585) 475-2255 (M-Th 8am-7pm, F 8am-5pm)
Public Safety: (585) 475-2853 or (585) 475-3333. or via IM at RITPublicSafety (if emergency or when SHC is closed)
Off Campus: 911
If you’re sick
Note to students who become ill
If you are diagnosed with H1N1 by non-RIT Student Health Center medical providers (such as your general physician), please report the information immediately to the Student Health Center by e-mail. Send to: JHRSHC@RIT.EDU
Please list the following:
- Where you are living during your illness
- Contact information (telephone #, e-mail address)
This information will be used for reporting purposes and to provide assistance as needed. If you have questions or need assistance, please call the Student Health Center: 585-475-2255.
Resident Students with the Flu
If you have flu like symptoms (fever 100 F or higher, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, body aches, headache, chills and fatigue), you should call the Student Health Center at (585) 475-2255 or your medical provider.
Based on the call, the Student Health Center or your medical provider may advise you to stay home or in your room until fever free for 24 hours without the use of fever reducing medication like Acetaminophen (Tylenol) and /or Ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin, Nuprin). This means you should not go to class, visit with friends/faculty/advisors, or go to a dining facility.
Students with the Flu
If the Student Health Center or medical provider recommends you stay in your room because you have the flu, you may choose to go home if you wish. Otherwise, you should stay in your assigned room for the recommended period of time.
Roommates Who Do Not Have a Chronic Medical Condition
If your roommate has the flu and is recovering in her/his on-campus housing, you may choose to go home, stay with a friend or find some other place to stay while your roommate is recovering. RIT will not provide you with alternate housing.
Roommates Who Do Have a Chronic Medical Condition
If your roommate has the flu and is recovering in her/his on-campus housing and any of the following apply to you:
- You have a chronic illness such as heart disease, asthma, diabetes or kidney disease
- You are taking medications that weaken your immune system
- You are on chronic aspirin therapy (due to the risk of Reye’s Syndrome)
- You are pregnant
- Call the Student Health Center at (585) 475-2255 to let them know you have a chronic medical condition
- Not stay in the same room with your sick roommate. You may choose to go home, stay with a friend or find some other place to stay. Contact Housing Operations if you need assistance.
Instructions for Requesting Meal Delivery During Isolation for Students living on campus with a meal plan
RIT Dining Services will prepare a “Get Well Meal Box” for all students who are recovering in their rooms due to the flu.
While recovering in your room, you may request to have a “Get Well Meal Box” delivered to your room if you have a meal plan or a debit plan. Students who do not have a meal plan or debit plan, may purchase debit on a weekly basis by contacting the Dining Services Main office at 475-2228.
Delivered Get Well Meal Boxes will be a pre-determined menu based upon Student Health Services recommendations for clear liquids and/or foods best tolerated with flu-like symptoms. Each box will contain enough food and beverage for a day and Dining Services will charge students meal and debit plan accounts at the following manner:
Meal plans: Deduct two meals per day
Debit plans: $15.00 per day
We ask that you make the call to the Corner Store to 475-5758 (or send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org) and provide: your name, hall, floor/room number and your RIT-UID number. Two meals or the appropriate debit charge will be deducted from your Dining Services student account for each day you order a “Get Well Meal Box”.
All Get Well Meal Box orders placed between 8am-1pm will be delivered the same day between 4pm-6pm
All Get Well Meal Box orders placed between 1pm- 11pm will be delivered the next day between 8am-10am.
Once you are feeling better and no longer need your daily order of a “Get Well Meal Box”, you may wish to have a sick meal picked up from Grace Watson that may contain menu selections that you feel you can tolerate.
Thank you for your understanding and cooperation with these procedures which are intended to best meet the needs of our residents. Get Well Soon!
“Get Well Meal Box”
2 – Cans of Soup
1 – Pkg. Oatmeal or Cream of Wheat
4- Pkg. Saltine Crackers
1 – Banana
1 – 1 Pouch of Uncle Bens Microwavable Rice
2 – Slices bread
4 – PC of Peanut Butter
2 – Small Turkey Sandwich w/ Cheese (2- mayo packets)
2 – Hot Tea Bags
3 – Packets of sugar
2 – Pudding cup or gelatin cup
2 – Juices
2 – 20 oz. Bottled Water
2 – 20 oz. Gatorade
3 – KFS set/napkins/ 3 paper hot cups. 4 (8 oz.) disp. Bowls, 3 (12 0z.) cold cups
Microwaves oven are available in the lounges on most floors. Microwave ovens may be made available for those students who do not have access to a microwave.