CDC Podcast Highlights Importance of Improving In-School Hygiene

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Learning how to make your school healthier -- while reducing student absenteeism -- is the subject of a new podcast on the Web site of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) at http://www.cdc.gov/podcasts.

The podcast profiles the "Healthy Schools, Healthy People: It's a SNAP" program (http://www.itsasnap.org). SNAP -- the School Network for Absenteeism Prevention -- is a collaboration between The Soap and Detergent Association (SDA) and the CDC.

The five-year old program encourages middle schools to help develop programs that make hand hygiene a priority for students, teachers, school health personnel, administrators and parents.

The CDC podcast (http://www2a.cdc.gov/podcasts/player.asp?f=6037) features a short video on how schools across the nation are educating their students on the importance of hand hygiene. The piece includes testimonials from award-winning program participants and comments from CDC director Julie Gerberding, MD, MPH.

"The SNAP program focuses on behavior change for better health and rewards students for doing their part in reducing absenteeism. Students across the nation have taken ownership of their health by getting involved in our program," said Nancy Bock, the SDA vice president of education.

SNAP launches at the beginning of the school year, just as cold and flu season approaches. According to the CDC, cleaning one's hands is the single most important thing people can do to keep from getting sick and spreading illness.

Interested educators can learn more and download specific information by visiting the SNAP Web site at http://www.itsasnap.org, or sending an e-mail to [email protected]

Source: Soap and Detergent Association

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