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Monday September 15th, 2014

Posted at 2:13pm

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The rare Enterovirus D68 could be a threat to children in Windsor-Essex and the Health Unit is warning parents to be aware of the risks.

The virus, which has sent hundreds of children in the United States to the hospital, has prompted Windsor Regional Hospital to issue visitor restrictions after an increase in the number of local children being treated for respiratory illnesses.

The Health Unit says, however, no local cases of Enterovirus D68 have been confirmed in Windsor and Essex County.

The Health Unit issued these tips for parents:

  • Most children will have a runny nose or cough, like a common cold.
  • More serious symptoms include wheezing, trouble breathing, and children not eating. Parents should seek immediate medical attention if their children have these symptoms.
  • Children with asthma and children under six months are more susceptible. They should see a doctor if they have persistent fevers, coughs, or display any trouble breathing.
  • To date, no children have died during the recent outbreak in the U.S.
  • There is no vaccination for the virus. Treatment includes keeping a child at home to prevent the spread of the virus and administering plenty of fluids and nutrition and ensuring the child gets lots of rest.
  • As with any respiratory illness, parents are advised to seek medical attention with their family healthcare provider if their children develop high fever or difficulty in breathing.

And they say preventing Enterovirus is similar to other respiratory viruses such as influenza, including:

  • Covering the mouth when coughing,
  • Good hand washing practices done frequently, and
  • Staying home when ill.

Health Unit staff will continue to monitor the situation both locally and provincially.

The CDC in the United States also recently released this infographic with tips about Enterovirus D68:

The Centres for Disease Control and Prevention in the United States released this infographic on Enterovirus D68

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