The Department of Health suspects that swine flu outbreaks have occurred at a number of L.A. schools, the L.A. Times reports. However, the county agency refuses to disclose the names of the schools, citing privacy concerns.

Which means parents across the county have no idea if their children are attending schools where swine flu is spreading. It will be interesting to see what Los Angeles Unified School District's Board of Education does when parents start demanding to know which schools are suspected.

This move by the county seems to be dramatically opposed to the upfront, keep-the-public-in-the-know strategy embraced just a few months ago, if you recall:

In the spring, it was all about total transparency by local government, as reported by PR Newswire at the time. What on earth happened between May and now?

Los Angeles County officials have revealed that two elementary schools, a high school and a

university have likely experienced outbreaks since the school year

began. But they won't say which ones.

An outbreak is defined

as when at least five students in the same institution are believed to

have H1N1 infections, a Department of Health spokesperson is quoted as

saying in the Times. That means at least 20 students in L.A. County are suspected of having swine flu. How long will their parents stay mum? As for the county health officials, what's the point of unnerving folks by announcing you're keeping a secret?

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