GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.- The Kent County Health Department reported Tuesday that flu cases reported this week was 127, bringing the seasonal total to 590 cases. Compared to the previous week, that number is down by 43 percent.
While the flu is striking moms and dads who drop their children off at Goddard School, a child care center in Cascade Township with newborns to 6 years, owner Kellie Olson-Cluster said she has seen very few cases in her students.
“I’ve been really happy, obviously you listen to all of the reports, you hear all of the conversation out there, there’s a lot of junk and funk going on around town, we’ve been blessed, we go weeks at a time where no children are calling in sick.” Olson-Custer said.
The facility has a very strict routine when it comes to sanitation and it starts right when the kids walk in the door. Instantly, they wash their hands, which continues throughout the day; before they eat and even go outside. Bundling them up to get some fresh air is very important in Olson-Custer’s eyes because it gets them out of a confined space, where germs can linger. Every night, the building is also professionally cleaned for six hours. Throughout the day, teachers and staff rely heavily on a very basic germ fighter; bleach. Keeping up with toy cleanliness is also key.
“Part of our normal process and procedure here is a four step sanitizing process. So we don’t wait until the end of the day or the end of the week, obviously we have a lot of little people here who there’s things going in their mouths, so when one child is finished with them they start to go through the four step process.” Olson-Custer explained.
While the number of children sick is very low, Olson-Custer said there is an increase of parents who need to drop their child off for the day, so they can go back home and fight the flu.