(PRESS RELEASE) – Given the social behaviors of children tend to place them at greater risk of some infectious conditions like the cold, flu and coronavirus, parents and guardians are being called on take the necessary precautionary measures to prevent the spread of germs among this age group.
As the Department of Health & Wellness continues to prepare for the possible threat of the coronavirus, parents and guardians are being provided with guidance on ways to reduce a child’s risk of infection.
Director of Bureau of Health Education Natasha Lloyd-Felix encouraged parents to ensure their children practice good hygiene in order to prevent the spread of germs.
“We are encouraging parents have their children wash their hands thoroughly from home so that when they are in school environment, environments of play or in another place where the parent may not be present that habit has already been developed. Parents we ask you please when your children are at home, model hand washing; you need to show your child how to hand wash by you doing it yourself. What we have noted to be an area of importance is the duration that is given for hand washing. One way of helping your child is by singing the alphabets song to your child. That actually gives the period of 20 secs that is required to have enough time to thoroughly hand wash. Ensure that your child gets the palms covered, ensure that your child is able to go between the fingers, under the nails, the back of the hands to allow a thorough hand washing.
Lloyd-Felix also spoke on the best approach for infection prevention in schools.
“If per chance you notice your child is unwell, we now in the flu season and the cold season, we ask you to keep your child at home as a way of protecting both your child and other children at school. Because, by being in the presence of others, the chances of spreading disease, spreading germs, spreading the infections increases. We note that sometimes parents feel that they have nowhere to place that child but we ask you please to consider a plan that in the event that the child were to become ill, it may not necessary be from corona if it was present in Saint Lucia, it may be the flu, that child can be safely placed there to avoid him or her being in a school environment.”
Principals and teachers of schools around the island are encouraged to ensure that hand sanitizers are readily available and also classroom surfaces are cleaned and disinfected on a daily basis.