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Zachary schools asking parents to keep sick kids home as flu numbers rise

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ZACHARY - School administrators in Zachary sent a letter Tuesday asking parents to keep sick kids at home as the school system is seeing an increase in students and faculty with the flu. 

The current strain hitting Louisiana schools is H1N1, also known as Influenza A & B.

"All of the elementary, middle, and high schools in our area are really struggling with the flu right now and seeing a lot of visits," Lindsay Thompson, the Zachary Elementary school nurse, said.

While the school system did not have the exact number of flu cases that they have seen, they said the number of absences has been incredible.

The Department of Health lists the Baton Rouge area in the moderate category of flu illnesses. Parishes surrounding Lafayette and Morgan City are trending high.

"If your children are sick please keep them home from school. I know everyone wants to get those final exams done and taken but really keep your children home if they are sick," Dr. Mindy Calandro with the Baton Rouge Clinic said.

Calandro recommends getting the Influenza vaccine each year to, at least, lessen the symptoms and duration of the flu.

Symptoms of Influenza A & B include high fever, sore throat, stomach pains, and headaches.

Vaccines are available at most drugstores and doctor's offices.

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