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Camps should keep calm but be prepared to deal with virus

The coronavirus, which has led to school closures and a run on stores as shoppers frantically stock up on hand sanitizer, toilet paper and other necessities, may impact yet another aspect of American life: camp.

With spring break around the corner, families are making plans. But the outbreak of COVID-19,  which has led to nine deaths in the U.S. and sickened tens of thousands worldwide, is leading some to consider postponing vacations. And it could make some parents think twice before enrolling their kids in vacation programs as well.

Outbreaks of illness, from the flu to strep throat, are always possible in a camp setting. But the coronavirus, which has no vaccine and is currently gripping headlines, may be particularly worrying to some camp goers.  

The Association of Camp Nursing has posted guidance for camp officials, noting that information about the virus “is a moving target.’’

Among the tips: 

Skip the first day if you have symptoms

Besides encouraging camp managers to frequently check the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s website for updates, the group encouraged them to tell families to keep children at home if they’re experiencing a fever, shortness of breath or other symptoms. They should do the same if they’ve been exposed to the virus.

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