Healthy Support

6 things experts say can help keep kids healthy in school amid flu, RSV and COVID

The public health emergency may be over, but COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations are back on the rise as the winter cold and flu season approaches and school is back in session.

Experts say families and schools can stay healthy by going back to basics — hand washing, ventilation, vaccines, masking and staying home when needed — and that schools should be prepared to respond to possible outbreaks.

More than 6.5 million children miss 15 days of school or more per year, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics. School absenteeism has been linked to a number of negative health and socioeconomic outcomes.

So far this school year, at least two school districts have had to cancel classes due to respiratory illnesses in Texas and Kentucky.

“We know that healthy students are better learners and that kids who have the opportunity to be in school and engaged with their

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Healthy Body

Outcry as World Health Assembly locks out Taiwan under pressure from China | Taiwan

The World Health Assembly has again rejected Taiwan’s request to join its annual gathering amid routine objections from China and despite strong support from a coalition of countries including the US, UK, France and Australia.

The assembly – the forum through which the World Health Organization is governed – on Monday decided not to extend an invitation for Taiwan to attend the 21-30 May event in Geneva as an observer. China and Pakistan spoke against the bid, while the Marshall Islands, Belize, Nauru and Eswatini – four of Taiwan’s 13 formal diplomatic allies – spoke in support.

Taiwan’s ministry of foreign affairs said its participation in the WHA was a matter of global public health. “Politics should not be allowed to take precedence over professionalism. It is not only unfair and unjust to shut Taiwan out due to Chinese political pressure, but also poses a serious threat to global health.

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