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Medical Guidance for Parents - 01.05.20

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Please see medical guidance from Dr Jill Grant in this article.

The Q&A session with Dr Jill Grant was ONLY for parents of our school community. 

We hope this is useful advice for our families as they try to manage the implications of Covid 19.

Massive thanks to Jill for her commitment to the people of Calderdale and specifically the community attending Ravenscliffe. We appreciate it greatly! 

You can watch the video Q&A here.

Most importantly please consider Jill’s advice about shielding. If your son or daughter has underlying health conditions AND/OR if they are a wheeelchair user then you should give serious consideration to this issue, at least and ring your GP for advice. 

  1. How is the current picture in Calderdale? We have been very lucky in Calderdale. A week last Monday we had 66 people in hospital with Covid (Coronavirus) infection and 16 people in intensive care. Last week we had 53 in hospital with only 10 in intensive care. Care homes remain a concern. In Calderdale we are very well organised, with plenty of staff and equipment. We have spare capacity.
  2. Why is Calderdale doing so well? We were quick to implement the safety procedures locally and respond to the Government's guidelines. We reduced the footfall and therefore the infection rate. GPs locally are still open, we are still working but behind closed doors. We have changed the way we work. From March 30th, any face to face appointments are at the local  'Hot Clinic'. We deal with as much as we can by telephone. If you have to see a GP, they will be wearing full PPE (personal protective equipment) to keep you safe.
  3. What is your personal opinion on social distancing? I think people are doing amazingly well, I have been very impressed with how people are doing their bit. 2m is very challenging, always remember the gap.
  4. What does shielding mean? Early on, the Government identified a group of people with specific medical vulnerabilities eg asthma and these people were asked to socially isolate- this means stay indoors as much as possible. Since then an additional group of people have been identified (based on diagnosis). This group are at high risk of becoming unwell if they were to catch Coronavirus and these people have been asked to shield. This means staying indoors completely and avoiding contact with anyone outside of the household group. Those people who are shielding should have received a letter which enables them to access benefits and support eg access to online shopping. If you are concerned that you should have received a letter and  haven't done, please call your local GP surgery. Ask to speak to the Doctor. Janet N thinks we have approximately 50 students who have a 'vulnerability' and should be shielding. If in doubt, please make the call. 
  5. What is this new childhood Covid and what is the risk? I can't give a full answer because there has been a lot of conflicting information. We have had heard of instances were 15-20 children have become very poorly very quickly. Symptoms include swollen glands, a high temperature and a rash. If you have any doubt about how poorly your child is then please get in touch with the Doctor. The pathway for any Coronovirus symptoms is still 111, anything else contact your GP.
  6. Are you receiving a lot of Government guidelines? It has calmed down a bit more recently but yes when it started we were getting inundated with daily bulletins. The worst day was 12 documents !!
  7. What is the latest guidance about masks? This is a difficult one. The surgical ones (the blue ones with a tie at the back) have a filter to stop anything spreading from the wearer of the mask to anyone else, but this doesn't stop the wearer from getting it through the mask. People do feel more protected wearing a mask, but you must not get lazy with your hand washing. The virus could be on the front of the mask. The homemade material ones don't have a filter and are probably less protective. However they might protect air borne droplet spread if the wearer sneezes or coughs. I think the Government will probably advise us next week about if we need to wear masks. You shouldn't need to wear them at home. In school it is very hard, quite a lot of our students wouldn't understand and our non-verbal students could possibly find it quite scary. Don't forget the virus lives on hard surfaces for at least 72 hours. You must also remember to dispose of the masks properly. If you have carers coming in to the family home, they should be putting on the PPE on your doorstep and taking it off before returning to their car. 

Additional General Points made:

The School Leadership Team meet every Thursday to discuss who we can offer a place at school for the following week. Every student is discussed based on the pastoral calls that have been made to our families. The National guidelines come out on Friday afternoons, we hope parents can understand how hard this is for us given the time constraints at the end of the week and the late publication of school specific Government Guidance and decision making.  

We would also like to thank the CMBC Transport Team for their continued support. We really appreciate them and their fantastic attitude every day.

It is very hard to stay at home day after day. It is can be even harder if you do not have some structure, Please try to build in some daily practical activities into your child’s day. 

Everyone is trying hard, but please call your GP if you feel you need some medical support. 

Martin added that he is happy to hear from anyone at home who may also be struggling. His number is 07757 289 562. If you have any questions to ask Dr Grant, please send to Martin and he will make sure that Jill Is given a chance to answer it for you...... if she can! 

This email will go out to every family, however if you don't have access to emails, please contact the School's Admin and request a paper copy on admin@ravenscliffe.calderdale.sch.uk

You have our personal commitment as a Leadership Team and Pastoral Team to continue to try our best to support you. 

Take care and stay safe everyone. 

Martin