Public Health reiterates prevention is top priority in COVID fight | #students | #parents

Huron Perth Public Health advises on maintaining transparency with reporting cases and outbreaks at schools. File photo

In the event of reporting confirmed cases and outbreaks of COVID-19 in schools Huron Perth Public Health is advocating for proper practices.

According to medical officer of health Dr. Miriam Klassen, the public health agency is committed to protecting the health of communities. Public health also is committed to maintaining transparency when it comes to outbreaks in schools and related settings such as before and after programs and transportation, she said.

“When publicly reporting confirmed cases and outbreaks of COVID-19 in school settings, we will balance providing relevant information that people need to protect their health, and an individual’s right to privacy,” said Klassen.

In the event of a positive result of COVID-19, public health will carry out contact tracing and a follow up.

Individuals who test positive for COVID-19 will be contacted by HPPH, and the health unit will work with the school to complete an investigation.

Within the investigation public health aims to identify all contacts that occurred in the school setting during the time period the positive case was potentially infectious to others.

According to public health, all of the people – including students and staff – who had close contact with the individual who tested positive will be contacted to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Direction will be provided for close contacts and individuals who were in contact with the confirmed case during the period of transmissibility.

In the case where an individual sees their positive test results online prior to HPPH reaching out, Klassen advises individuals that their first step should be to contact Huron Perth Public Health to receive direction.

Parents and guardians are encouraged to keep children home and call HPPH at 1-888-221-2133, ext. 3267 if they have not been contacted by the local public health agency.

“If students, parents or staff become aware of a confirmed case of COVID-19 related to a school but have not been contacted directly by HPPH, they can continue to attend school or work and continue the self monitoring of symptoms that we should all be doing on a daily basis,” said Klassen.

In the event of a positive COVID-19 test, public health will provide next steps and guidance, including directions for other household members.

If a parent or guardian receives the results after hours or on the weekend, they are encouraged to call 1-888-221-2133 and choose the on-call option.

While awaiting directions from public health, parents are urged to keep their child in isolation at home to prevent further spread.

In order to protect the privacy of individuals, Huron Perth Public Health will not comment if an individual case is confirmed in a school setting. Yet, public health will report positive cases and demographic trends such as age, gender and municipality.

School boards and schools are required to report online with public health if there is a confirmed case of COVID-19 that involves a student or staff member.

An outbreak will be declared in a school if there are two or more cases of COVID-19 in a 14-day period, and if there is evidence that transmission occurred at the school.

In the event of an outbreak declared at a school, public health will make it known publicly, the school will be identified and any closures as a result of the outbreak will be described.

“Individual cases and contained outbreaks may not necessarily result in a school closure,” Klassen.

According to Huron Perth Public Health, in the case of an outbreak at a school, information will be posted online including the school name, and date the outbreak was declared. The school and families will be assisted by public health in taking measures to contain or stop the spread.

“We can all play a part in stopping COVID-19 from spreading in our community and in our schools,” said Klassen, who reminds the public that now, more than ever, COVID-19 prevention is a top priority.


Source link

.  .  .  .  .  .  . .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .   .   .   .    .    .   .   .   .   .   .  .   .   .   .  .  .   .  .