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Community

Alexandria Recorder

May 26, 2011

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Health officials stress prevention as cases of shigella rise Almost 40 cases of Shigella have been reported in Northern Kentucky since April 1. With most of these cases being associated with child care centers, the Northern Kentucky Health Department is reminding residents to use proper hand washing techniques and to keep children home if they are ill. Shigella is a bacteria that infects the bowels. It causes an illness called Shigellosis, with symptoms including diarrhea, fever, stomach cramps, nausea or vomiting. Shigella primarily infects young children, since it is spread through contact with the stool of an infected person. “The Health Department has been seeing a significant number of cases of Shigella in recent weeks,” said Lynne Saddler, MD,

MPH, District Director of Health. “We are working with local doctors’ offices and child care centers to educate them about preventing the spread of Shigella in the community. And, with the outdoor pools opening soon, we want to remind individuals what they can do to stop the spread of this illness. By taking steps to prevent Shigella now, we can avoid additional cases in Northern Kentucky.” To keep from getting Shigella, you should: • Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and running water after using the restroom, after changing diapers, and before preparing or eating food. This is the best way to prevent the spread of infectious diseases found in the intestinal tract, such as Shigella.

• Do not use wading pools or water tables for groups of children, because Shigella is transferred easily in standing water. • Dispose of soiled diapers properly. • If you have diarrhea, stay home from work, school or child care until you are better. Also, do not prepare food for others while you have diarrhea. You may want to contact your doctor for testing. Shigella is often transmitted in child-care facilities, since many children are in diapers. Of the 36 cases reported to the Health Department through May 3, 78 percent have been connected to people attending or working in child care centers. The Health Department has been working with local centers to remind them of proper hand washing tech-

niques and to make sure the children and staff who have Shigella remain at home until they have completed treatment and have a negative stool culture. “Shigella can easily be transmitted through swimming pools— both public and private—if someone is experiencing diarrhea and swims in a pool,” said Steve Divine, Director of Environmental Health and Safety. “Pool operators should remind patrons not to swim if they have diarrhea. We also encourage public pools to exclude children not toilet-trained from using their facilities. Even the use of plastic diaper pants or diapers designed for use in the water cannot guarantee that fecal matter does not get into the pool water.” Each year, about 18,000 cases

of Shigella are reported in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Because many milder cases of Shigella are not diagnosed or reported, the CDC estimates that the actual number of cases may be 20 times greater. In Northern Kentucky (Boone, Campbell, Grant and Kenton counties), an average of 25 cases of Shigella are reported each year. Anyone with symptoms of Shigella should contact his or her health care provider. The illness can be treated with antibiotics. In severe cases, hospitalization may be required to avoid dehydration. For more information on Shigella, please read the attached fact sheet, or visit the Health Department’s website at http://www.nkyhealth.org.

Law college’s Bales named 2011 Regents Professor at NKU Northern Kentucky University announced that Professor Richard Bales of the NKU Chase College of Law has been named the university’s 2011 Regents Professor. The Regents Professorship, as established by the NKU Board of Regents, recognizes a full professor who

has an exceptional record of achievement in scholarship or creative activity that has brought acclaim to the university and is consistent with the university’s core values. “When I consider the outstanding NKU faculty members who previously have been named Regents Profes-

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ship from a primary focus on American labor and employment law to more of a focus on international/comparative scholarship concerning labor/employment law and dispute resolution. This scholarship will build on the work conducted in summer 2010 as a Fulbright Scholar.

alternative dispute resolution in the workplace. Bales has also served as interim dean of the Chase College of Law in 2006, associate dean for faculty development from 2007-09 and recently led a Chase self-study process. As a Regent’s Professor, Bales will turn his scholar-

exceptionally fortunate at NKU to have all of these.” Bales, who last year was named NKU’s Frank Sinton Milburn Outstanding Professor, is the director of the Chase Center for Excellence in Advocacy and teaches civil procedure, labor law, employment law, employment discrimination and

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