On Monday 2nd January, the government published a press release after Christmas break reminding parents that winter illnesses continue to circulate at high levels and that they should be aware of this and take extra precautions for the safety of their children. Parents should ensure that they are kept informed and updated for the safety of their children.
In the coming weeks, flu and COVID-19 are likely to continue circulating at high levels as numbers of scarlet fever caused by step A also continue to be reported, increasing the risk of spread and illness to children.
A professor at the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) stated the importance of minimizing the spread of the infection in schools and educational settings, which can be done with only a few simple steps which would ultimately protect the wider community.
The UKHSA also urged that children should learn about the importance of good hygiene as it is key and will overall help prevent the spread of infection. So, it is crucial for children to practice regular handwashing with soap and warm water when at home. It is also advised that catching coughs and sneezes and binning them is another simple but effective way of preventing the spread of illness.
Adults have also been warned to stay home if they are feeling unwell, but if they need to leave their homes in these conditions, they should wear a face covering. And it is severely urgent that individuals who are not feeling well should not visit healthcare settings or vulnerable people as they could be put at higher risk.
Carlton Vale Infant school and Kilburn Park school are an example of how schools can help keep their children and parents informed about the COVID guidelines as they have constant reminders all around the school and teach the children about the importance of staying protected from illness, as both schools take high priority in their student’s safety.
There is a park that surrounds both schools, to which holds noticeboards encouraging the prevention of spreading covid-19. It is important to surround areas filled with children with notices as they are often very vulnerable due to their lack of understanding of viruses. By keeping reminders in areas that are often filled with children, such as parks, it’s easier for them to remember to social distance, to avoid the spread of bacteria and infections, especially in the season of flus amongst other high rates of viruses.
Not many children are seen outside playing around during these times, perhaps due to the worry of covid-19 and other flus. Parents may worry about sending their children to school in fear they might catch something that’ll make them unwell.
As a reminder the best protection against the virus is the flu vaccination which is still available for all eligible groups. We all know that the flu can be very unpleasant and, in some cases, can lead to serious illness, therefore getting children vaccinated protects them and others they are in contact with. Children who are eligible to take the vaccine is aged 2-3 years and all primary school-aged children and some secondary school-aged children.