COVID-19 safety for students

HealthBeat

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — Many students in KELOLAND are back in the classroom and that has a local doctor offering his recommendations.

With school back in session, Sanford Health’s Dr. Fernando Bula-Rudas says preventing the spread of COVID-19 is crucial.

A major part of preventing transmission is by wearing a mask and avoiding crowded places.

“But if you have no choice, like, I mean, for example, you’re going to school and then you’re going to be surrounded by other people then wear a mask when you can not keep that distance, which is the six feet that is recommended,” Bula-Rudas said.

That six foot recommendation is especially important in areas where students will need to take their masks off, such as lunch time.

“Droplets are, you know, like go from our respiratory system from our mouth to the air as we speak, not only by coughing or sneezing, but as we speak we’re producing like these droplets that, go a certain distance and then if we have a person in proximity, then these droplets reach the respiratory tract of that person,” Bula-Rudas said.

Recent CDC guidelines state that if you’ve come within six feet of a person with COVID-19 but do not display any symptoms, you do not necessarily need a test.

But Dr. Bula-Rudas says the testing of asymptomatic people is in fact necessary to slow the spread.

“If someone tests positive, being asymptomatic, just by the fact of, being exposed to a person who develops symptoms or a positive case, then that person can be, you know, in quarantine or avoid the spread of the virus. So that’s the importance of testing asymptomatic individuals who have been exposed,” Bula-Rudas said.

A simple way for students to remember what precautions to take is by the ‘three W’s’.

“Which is, watch your distance, wash your hands often and wear your mask pretty much at all times when you are, when you’re surrounded by people,” Bula-Rudas said.

Dr. Bula-Rudas adds that fortunately, children adapt quickly, making these basic recommendations something they’re able to learn fast.

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