Reducing the rates of flu in Central Texas not only directly improves the health of students and those they may expose to infectious disease, but will also benefit student educational outcomes and the regional economy.
This work was based on a ground-breaking Absence Reasons Study conducted by E3 Alliance and Children’s Optimal Health in 2013 to better understand why students were absent in order to better inform decision-making about how community and health infrastructure impacted students. The study determined that almost half (48%) of all student absences were due to acute illness. A Flu Immunization Taskforce was formed, and has been working together since the fall of 2013, studying local and national data on acute illness, and in particular influenza, and the related health and educational impacts due to flu illness.
The E3-3D presentation focused on
- Ground-breaking research linking health, absenteeism, and educational outcomes
- The potential impact of a school-based influenza immunization pilot program on student absenteeism
- Review of opportunities and challenges of a region-wide pilot on-campus immunization program being launched this fall in five Central Texas school districts
- How we can together create a platform for effective community outreach to have many more families participate in this effort
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