Time article published online on Jan. 4

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By cathlina on Mon, 01-05-09, 18:21

Five years ago, at a San Francisco elementary school, a nurse stood by to ensure that the children scrubbed their hands as they arrived, while their packed lunches were confiscated and searched for nut products. The measures were a precaution to protect a 5-year-old boy at the school who had a severe nut allergy.

Recently, a Massachusetts school district evacuated a school bus full of 10-year-olds after a stray peanut was found on the floor.

Do these safeguards seem a little, well, nuts? Harvard professor Dr. Nicholas Christakis thinks so. One of Christakis' children attends school in the district that ordered the bus evacuation, and the episode prompted the physician and social scientist

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