In preparation for the new school term, January-March 2024, the Ministry of Health, Wellness and Elderly Affairs takes this opportunity to remind parents to be vigilant and stay updated with the latest health information and guidelines provided by the Ministry of Health, educational institutions and other government authorities to help reduce the spread of infectious diseases. Presently, we have noted an increase in gastroenteritis and respiratory cases. It is critical that we take measures to prevent the spread of these infections. To do this, you must:
- Ensure that your child has hand sanitizer, disinfectant wipes and a bottle of hand soap when attending school. Involve your child in the process to instill a sense of responsibility and ownership.
- Encourage your child to get sufficient sleep, eat nutritious meals, practice good oral hygiene, and get enough physical activity to keep their bodies healthy.
- Provide a daily supply of water so that your child remains hydrated. When preparing lunch bags, limit packaged snacks and sugar sweetened beverages. Make use of seasonal fruits and vegetables to encourage healthier eating habits.
- Utilize infection prevention and control methods such as:
- Encouraging frequent hand washing before and after eating, using the washroom and playing outside, to help prevent the spread of germs and viruses.
- Cleaning, sanitizing, and disinfecting surfaces, and limit the sharing of personal belongings.
- Teaching your child to cough and sneeze in their elbows or into a tissue.
- If your child develops symptoms including coughing, runny nose, sore throat, fever, vomiting or diarrhea, seek medical care and do not send the child to school until the symptoms have resolved. Reinforce the idea that those measures are in place to protect their health and the well-being of others.
- Ensure that all medication provided to your child is given as prescribed and follow the advice of your medical professional.
As the new school term commences, the Ministry of Health, Wellness and Elderly Affairs would like to wish parents/guardians, principals, teachers, care givers, auxiliary staff and students a happy, prosperous and productive new year.