H1N1 REACHES RYERSON’S EARLY LEARNING CENTER

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BY MAX MERTENS

A child attending the Ryerson Early Learning Centre is healthy again after being diagnosed with H1N1 last week.

“The child was fine and received the first half of the immunization on Friday,” said Sally Kotsopoulos, the manager of Ryerson’s Early Learning Centre.

A doctor diagnosed the case as H1N1 and the family was asked to keep the child at home for a week.

Kotsopoulos couldn’t give the name or gender of the pre-schooler for confidentiality reasons.

Over 60 children between the ages of two-and-a-half to four attend the daycare, which is attached to Kerr Hall. Some of Ryerson’s Early Childhood Education students complete placements at the daycare.

Children under five years old are a priority group because of their developing immune systems, according to physician Andrew Pinto, who works with Toronto Public Health. He doesn’t think Ryerson students should be worried despite the high-risk group being housed within the university.

“There shouldn’t be any anxiety about having a daycare in the area,” said Pinto.

“Those kids are just at higher risk of getting really sick.”

Precautions at the daycare include posting warning signs on the doors and nearby hallways, making sure the playground equipment is disinfected with a strong bleach solution and vigilant hand-washing.

“Everyone is being really conscientious in calling in if anyone is sick,” said Kotsopoulous.

“Doctors have been quick to diagnose any flu as swine flu,” she said.

“But we make sure that the tests have been run first. We don’t want to be fear-mongering.”


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