FRANKLIN PARISH - A nasty bug has been floating around and infecting many Franklin Parish for over two weeks. There have been multiple cases of contagious viruses. As a result, schools will be closed November 3, 2017.
The flu, mono, and strep throat have all been traveling through the air of Franklin Parish and doctors say they haven't seen anything like it. "I've never seen it this bad, of course this is a flu season, but as far as the pure numbers I don't think we've seen this in a long time," says Physician Tommy Banks.
The Louisiana Department of Health says the bug hit the schools particularly hard and nearly all of them are experiencing a record number of absences.
The hospitals and clinics have been swamped says Dr.Banks, "I know working the emergency room this weekend I probably saw, we're probably seeing between ten and 20 cases each day coming in."
Banks also shares that this kind of epidemic hasn't been seen in a very long time, but it isn't anything new."It's kind of always going on, it just kind of makes a circle, it's always mutating a little bit, and depends on how much it mutates is how sick people can get."
Flu season did make a special appearance early this year, and this can be the reason Franklin is seeing so many cases of the illnesses. However, Dr. Tommy Banks says there are still precautions that can be taken to prevent people from getting sick.
"These viruses are definitely contagious and that's definitely how it spread from person to person and that's why I think the school's been affected so bad." So if you haven't already Dr. Banks says, "People need to make sure they get the flu shot if they haven't gotten it. That does help not only prevent you from getting affected but there's a thing called herd immunity where the more people that have the flu shots and are protected that just protects the community as a whole."
Custodians and Administrators will be the only personnel working tomorrow in Franklin Parish while schools are closed. Each school will be cleaned thoroughly.