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Swine Flu Won't Automatically Trigger U.S. School Closures: Official

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The U.S. government may take a less aggressive stance on school closings in swine flu outbreaks, officials involved in establishing national swine flu response guidelines told the Associated Press.

Earlier this year, the government recommended that schools close down at the first sign of the H1N1 swine flu virus, but that advice was later relaxed.

Under the new guidelines, federal officials may recommend school closures only under "extenuating circumstances," such as cases where there are many children with underlying medical conditions, an official involved in guideline discussions told the AP.

The government might also suggest school closures if many students or staff are already sick or absent. Officials are trying to finalize guidelines before the start of the new school year.

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