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BSA Advisory Update: Ebola Virus Disease
15th October 2014

Following various requests from schools, and conversations with the ISC, here is an update and advisory note on the Ebola situation.

 

1. Medical update

 

See the ISC/BSA guidance note.

Some information about Ebola has been in place for some time, while more is being issued daily. Please find below 14 links giving comprehensive information on Ebola and how the global outbreak is being managed. These may be useful for you when communicating with staff, pupils, governors, parents or other stakeholders.

 

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/ebola-virus-disease-clinical-management-and-guidance#public-health-management

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/cobr-meeting-on-ebola-8-october-2014

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/355451/Ebola_advice_for_educational_childcare_young_persons_settings_20140911.pdf

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/349569/01_09_14__Ebola_QA.pdf

https://www.gov.uk/government/topical-events/ebola-government-response

http://www.nhs.uk/news/2014/10October/Pages/ebola-could-reach-the-uk-soon-but-outbreak-risk-low.aspx

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/ebola-surveillance-and-contingency-planning-ongoing-in-uk

http://www.nathnac.org/ds/map_world.aspx

http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs103/en/

http://who.int/csr/disease/ebola/ebola-faq-en.pdf?ua=1

http://who.int/ith/updates/20140421/en/

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/353953/Guidance_on_infection_control_in_schools_11_Sept.pdf

http://www.nhs.uk/conditions/ebola-virus/pages/ebola-virus.aspx

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/354641/VHF_algorithm_10_09_2014.pdf 

 

2. Managing concerns about Ebola

 

Contact between pupils from different countries

 

Schools with a mix of students from different countries may be facing concerns from parents about whether their child should be associating with, for instance, other pupils from countries affected by Ebola. Some pupils may also be displaying their own ‘fear of contagion’ behaviour having reached their own conclusions, informed or otherwise, about whether they are at risk. We recommend that staff, pupils and parents are told that any fears they may have within a school are low-risk and this reassurance should come, ideally, from a senior staff member with responsibility for pastoral care.  It may also be worth adding that anyone with any concerns can contact your school nurse for advice at any time.

 

Travel arrangements for pupils

 

Schools with students from seriously affected countries, or neighbouring countries (ie Sierra Leone or wider West Africa), planning to travel home at half term, will need to follow the latest advice from the UK Government, and from their own government back home. This could, potentially, mean that they are advised not to travel home (in which case alternative supervision arrangements will need to be made for them) or they may face screening or other restrictions when returning to the UK. In issuing any specific advice for students, it is crucial this is done in full accordance with guidance from your school nurse and GP, and that any medical steps they recommend are closely followed.

 

3. School policy example

 

Heathfield School has kindly shared their Ebola policy, which you may find useful.

 

As appropriate we will issue further advice on Ebola, as the situation develops. Meantime if you have any specific medical queries, not covered by your own nurse, GP or the links in , please feel free to contact Kathy Compton, nursing adviser to the BSA via compton.ka@gmail.com

 

 

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