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Peak of flu season shows in the classroom

Published On: Feb 04 2013 10:58:48 PM CST   Updated On: Feb 04 2013 11:05:55 PM CST

Kelsea Robilil has perfect attendance so far this school year. She has a simple trick.

"I wash my hands," she said.

Many classrooms aren't full, though.

"She said most likely they have the flu," Kelsea said.

"It's hard to predict, but I think we're peaking at the moment," Dr. Russell Grant said of the flu season.

School absences are up across the nation and that's being largely attributed to the flu.  Here in the Coachella Valley, it's no different.

For example, at one  elementary school in Palm Springs Unified School District, 88 kids were absent the second week of January and 233 were absent the third week.

"Children share cups, eating utensils, they don't wash their hands as often as they should. They're in close areas, they're playing a lot," Dr. Grant said.

Parents can try their best to keep kids healthy, too.

"We give her vitamins, we make her wash her hands a lot and tell her how important that is."

Doctors say most kids don't wash their hands as long as they should. Just as important as washing..

"Keep your child home if they are sick, so that keeps it from spreading around close-knit communities," Dr.

When asked what she will continue to do to make sure she doesn't have to miss a day of school, Kelsea said, "Wash my hands."

Simple, but it might just keep her absences at zero.
Here is an update on flu deaths:

So far this year,14 percent of deaths in Riverside County have been attributed to pneumonia or the flu.