RSU 71 Health Services
Dear RSU # 71 Parents and Guardians,
There has been a lot of news of late about the importance of preparing for the coronavirus (known as COVID-19). The Center for Disease Control (CDC) recommends that individuals and families follow everyday preventive measures below:
- Voluntary Home Isolation: Students, staff, families, and community members should stay home when sick with respiratory disease symptoms. At the present time, these symptoms are more likely due to influenza or other respiratory viruses than to the COVID-19-related virus.
- Respiratory Etiquette: Cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue, then throw it in the trash can.
- Hand Hygiene: Wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds; especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
- When Out and About - If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with 60%-95% alcohol.
- Environmental Health Action: Routinely clean frequently touched surfaces and objects
Routine use of these measures by individuals and their families will increase community resilience and readiness for responding to an outbreak.
We will continue to teach and practice handwashing in our schools. (There is more involved in doing it well than one would think!) Below please find a link to some videos showing best practices in handwashing.
Please feel free to be in touch if you have any questions.
Role of the School Nurse
According to the National Association of School Nurses (NASN), the primary role of the school nurse is to support student learning by acting as an advocate and liaison between home, the school, and the medical community regarding concerns that are likely to affect a student’s ability to learn. Components of a coordinated school health program (provided by the school nurse) include the following comprehensive services:
Health services - Serves as the coordinator of health services program, provides nursing care, and advocates for health rights.
Health education - Provides appropriate health information that promotes informed health care decisions, promotes health, prevents disease, and enhances school performance.
Environment - Identifies health and safety concerns in the school community and promotes a safe and nurturing school environment.
Nutrition - Supports school food service programs and promotes the benefits of healthy eating.
Physical education / activity - Promotes healthy activities, physical education, and sports policies / practices that promote safety and good sportsmanship.
Counseling / mental health - Provides appropriate health counseling, assesses mental health needs, provides interventions, refers students to appropriate school staff or community agencies, and provides follow up once treatment is prescribed.
Parent / community involvement - Promotes community participation in assuring a healthy school.
Staff Wellness - Provides health education, monitoring, counseling and programs that promote a healthy staff and school environment.
(Source: "Scope and Standards of School Nurse Practice" NASN, 2002)