Jamaica Gleaner
Published: Tuesday | October 13, 2009
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Stella Maris restarts after HFMD scare
Stella Maris Preparatory School in upper St Andrew resumed classes yesterday following a two-day disruption because hand, foot and mouth disease (HFMD) had been detected there.

Classes ended prematurely last Thursday with further closure of the school doors last Friday in an effort to control the viral disease.

The Ministry of Health has confirmed that there were four cases of the virus at the learning institution.

HFMD is caused by intestinal viruses. It usually affects infants and children, and is contagious.

Full turnout

The decision to close the institution was taken to allow time for a general clean-up and sanitising exercise which ended on Sunday.

Chairman of the school board, Monsignor Michael Lewis, said school got off to a smooth start, with a full turnout of the students.

The HFMD can be spread through direct contact with the mucus, saliva or faeces of an infected person.

HFMD is not to be confused with foot-and-mouth disease, which affects sheep, cattle and swine.

- Nadisha Hunter

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