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Health officials monitoring chickenpox cases at CHS

Regional and local health officials are monitoring a pair of confirmed cases of chickenpox at Cairo High School. Officials with the Grady County Health Department, Southwest Health District say they along with the Grady County School System are keeping an eye on the situation.
According to information from the health district, the common childhood infection can spread easily to those who have never had it or the vaccine. Symptoms include a rash of itchy blisters, fever, headache and tiredness.
The infection spreads through the air when an infected person coughs or sneezes or when people touch fluid from blisters.
If a child develops chickenpox, parents are asked to notify the Grady County Health Department, the child’s school and healthcare provider.
Children who develop chickenpox should not return to school until the rash has scabbed over, according to information from the health district. It also states that in settings such as schools chickenpox occurrences can last up to six months, but that vaccine has been used successfully to control outbreaks.
The Grady County Health Department does have available vaccines for children 12 months and older. When there is a chickenpox occurrence, children who have had one dose of the vaccine are advised to have a second dose.
The high school notified parents of the situation, and a letter from Dr. Charles Ruis, District Health Director, is posted on the high school’s website.
Dr. Kermit Gilliard, superintendent of Grady County Schools, says those with questions or concerns should contact the Grady County Health Department (229-377-2992), the Grady County Board of Education (229-377-3701), or their local healthcare provider.

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