Friday, November 02, 2012
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CEL closed this morning due to number of illnesses

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[November 02, 2012]  After numerous children and staff fell ill, Chester-East Lincoln School was closed on Friday morning. A note on the CEL website,, explains that the school was closed this morning due to the number of illnesses.

No authority could be reached this afternoon to say if the school might reopen on Monday. LDN will continue to seek an answer to that question.

According to the Logan County Department of Public Health, no other schools or other institutions are reporting illness at this time.

Mary Anderson, communicable disease coordinator at the county health department, said Friday afternoon that at this time the school is experiencing an acute gastrointestinal outbreak.

"To clarify, the health department did not tell the school to close. That was their decision," Anderson said.

The state lab has requested three to five stools and/or vomitus specimens for testing. Stool specimens being sent to Springfield would confirm Norovirus. One specimen was delivered to the the state lab today via a health department employee. One came in late, so it will go in on Monday.

"I have encouraged the school and parents I have spoken with to submit specimens," Anderson said.

Specimen containers and directions are available at the health department's front desk.

The health department's food sanitarians made an inspection of the kitchen today. Based upon their observations, it did not appear that food was the cause.

Anderson emphasized that the illness is highly contagious even as aerosol from vomitus. Proper hygiene and hydration are important during outbreak situations.

The Logan County Department of Public Health is located at 109 Third St. in Lincoln; phone 217-735-2317. General clinic hours at the health department are Monday-Friday, 7:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.

For more information on Norovirus, visit the Illinois Department of Public Health website:


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