Message to parents regarding covid-19

Message to parents regarding covid-19

Message to parents regarding covid-19

17th Mar 2020

Information for parents regarding covid-19 can be found below.

Visiting Alder Hey 

In order to protect patients, staff and the public we are introducing new visiting arrangements. We want to maintain contact and support between patients and their families and carers, whilst ensuring that we take measures that prevent the spread of the infection. These measures reduce the possibility of the virus inadvertently being brought into the hospital and help to keep vulnerable children safe

In order to protect patients, staff and the public we are introducing new visiting arrangements. We want to maintain contact and support between patients and their families and carers, whilst ensuring that we take measures that prevent the spread of the infection. These measures reduce the possibility of the virus inadvertently being brought into the hospital and help to keep vulnerable children safe.

We appreciate that this may be difficult but ask that you follow these rules to help our staff care for your child safely, while keeping other patients, visitors and staff safe during this period.

Avoid visiting the hospital if you might have COVID-19

If, in the last 7 days, you have had any of the following:

  • a high temperature – you feel hot to touch on your chest or back or a thermometer reads 37.8ºC or higher
  • a new, continuous cough – this means you've started coughing repeatedly
  • have tested positive for COVID-19

then you should:

  • self-isolate as per current NHS guidance, until it has been at least 7 days since the symptoms started (or your test was positive), you are feeling better and you no longer have a temperature. A persistent cough alone does not mean you must continue to self-isolate for more than 7 days
  • not visit the hospital until your self-isolation has finished.

Dr Andrew Riordan, Alder Hey Consultant in Paediatric Infectious Diseases and Immunology, advises that: “As the children and young people with infection are being treated in isolation, there is an extremely low risk to any other patients, or visitors.  The evidence indicates that children are less likely to become ill with the virus than adults.  As with adults, children should use the usual preventive actions to avoid infection, including cleaning hands often using soap and water or alcohol-based hand sanitiser, and avoiding people who are sick.”

Additional visiting guidance during the COVID-19 outbreak

In all cases:

  • Use hand gel on entering and leaving the ward
  • Visitor numbers on the inpatient wards, outpatients and Emergency Department are restricted to a maximum of two close family members or carers each day, without symptoms listed above where reasonably possible

For further information about visiting Alder Hey during the COVID-19 outbreak can be found here.

What if you suspect your child has coronavirus symptoms?

The latest information on symptoms of Coronovirus infection can be found here.

The Chief Medical Officer has announced that the country is moving into the ‘Delay’ stage of the response to coronavirus from Friday 13th March 2020.

The new advice issued by the Chief Medical Officer is as follows:

  • Stay at home for 7 days if you have either:
    • a high temperature – you feel hot to touch on your chest or back
    • a new, continuous cough – this means you've started coughing repeatedly
  • Do not go to a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital

However, if you feel you or your child are too unwell to stay at home or may have another condition (particularly if under six months of age), you may still need to seek help. Please see here  for information about young children with a high temperature.

NHS 111 has an online coronavirus service that can tell you if you need medical help and advise you what to do. Only call NHS 111 if you cannot get help online.

Stay at home advice can be found here.

Should my child be tested for the new coronavirus?

Testing for coronavirus is not needed if you're staying at home. Most children with fever and cough do not require testing. Testing of suspected coronavirus cases is carried out in line with strict guidelines. Only children who have to stay in hospital with symptoms that may be coronavirus are being tested for the illness. This is to ensure that children are cared for in the most suitable environment to protect themselves and others. 

What if you suspect your child has coronavirus and they have a separate hospital appointment or operation?

You should not attend the hospital for an appointment if you or your child has coronavirus or has coronavirus symptoms. Please telephone in advance so that we can make alternative arrangements and know that you will not be coming. 

What is Alder Hey’s role in the response to coronavirus?

Alder Hey is a centre for treating children and young people with coronavirus and there will at times be patients with this illness being cared for in our specialist facilities. As one of a small number of centres in England that treat people with very infectious diseases, our experienced team are well prepared for this. You may see members of our staff wearing protective equipment to keep themselves and our patients safe. 

How to avoid catching or spreading coronavirus?

Everyone is being reminded to follow Public Health England advice to:

  • Always carry tissues with you and use them to catch your cough or sneeze. Then bin the tissue, and wash your hands, or use a sanitiser gel.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water, especially after using public transport. Use a sanitiser gel if soap and water are not available.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are unwell.

 

 

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