Hand In Hand Health Department Updates
Hello HIHCM Community!
We have navigated our first weeks together in person. Families, thank you for engaging! Our health screenings and drop offs seem to be going really well. 👍👍
We wanted to inform you of some new items.
First, our HIH health office is staffed part-time by:
- Jenni West who is handling the COVID-related health concerns.
- Sari Shorey, our new HIH school nurse, who is building the health office program as we move forward.
Secondly, in an attempt to simplify health related communication to and from our community, we have created a new email address for just our HIH Health Department.
Thirdly, below you will find updates for any health related policy/procedures and questions:
- To report your child's absence:
- Email your child's classroom teacher
- To report a communicable illness (like influenza or strep):
- To let HIHCM know of your health care provider's advice regarding whether your student's symptoms might be COVID-19 related and whether siblings should remain home or can be in the classroom:
- For COVID-19-related concerns :
Finally, below you will find updates for the COVID-19 policy/procedure:
COVID-19 Updates--NEW for October
Health Screening change:
(Of course, if a student is vomiting or would otherwise be feeling too sick to go to school under normal conditions, our general policies would have them stay home until the symptoms have resolved for 24 hours.)
- Children are requested to remain home (or go home with mid-day onset):
- For 1 or more Common Symptom(s):
- Fever (chills, sweats)
- New or worsening of a previous cough
- Shortness of breath
- Loss of sense of smell or taste
- For 2 or more less common symptoms:
- Sore Throat
- Muscle Aches
- New or worsening nasal congestion or runny nose
- Hoarse voice
- Nausea or vomiting
- Unusual fatigue
If a student does qualify to be at home, please call your health care provider asap and ask if a COVID-19 test is recommended for that child's symptoms. Some may require an office visit first.
**NEW--If a COVID test is recommended, then ask your provider whether siblings (household members) should remain at home until the COVID test results are known OR if they can still go to school if asymptomatic. We are asking the providers to sort through symptoms that are more likely to be common colds versus a stronger possibility of COVID.
If your provider advises that all household members should isolate from the community, please do so, even if your other children are asymptomatic.
If your provider thinks that siblings can remain in their HIH classroom, let Jenni know at email@example.com. (The child with symptoms should still remain at home while waiting for results, even if the symptoms resolve.) See below for sample note.
- If no COVID-19 test is needed, symptom-free siblings and household members can be at school.
- If no COVID-19 test is needed, students may return to school after their symptoms resolve per our general sick policies.
If a COVID-19 test is needed:
- Please let us know what your doctor's advice is regarding COVID-19 testing via email. (Previously we had asked for a doctor's note).
- Email Jenni West at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We want your children in the classroom! 🙂 Our preference is to collaborate with families and health care providers to make wise choices for each scenario.
- If students are tested and are negative for COVID-19, then they can return to HIH once their symptoms resolve with evidence of 1 negative test.
- (Previously 2 negative tests.)
- After a positive diagnosis, families can reach out to their health care provider and the health office for next steps and returning to school.
- If a family does not prefer to reach out to their health care provider for health advice, a decision tree for guidance about navigating COVID in schools is offered by the MN Dept of Health and can be accessed HERE.
- 14-day quarantines for the household are recommended for COVID-like symptoms without a health care provider's input/oversight.
QUESTIONS about these updates, please email Jenni West -- email@example.com
We are figuring it out together!
--The COVID Response Team