Coronavirus

Information for parents and staff concerned about coronavirus

It is certainly not unusual for schools to go through a season during which various illnesses are prevalent within the community and there have been some high rates of absence within school over recent weeks due to illness. However, the current issue of Coronavirus is also a matter of relevance to us, especially given the regular transborder movement of our international community.

Given the particular dangers at the moment, we are:

  • Insisting that if anyone within your family has returned from travel or intends to travel to China, Japan, Singapore, Thailand, South Korea, Hong Kong, Australia, Malaysia, Taiwan, that you notify us prior to sending your child back to school. We will inform you of the medical clearances that we require ;
  • Increasing our vigilance further by checking the temperature of all children three times per week, removing any children showing signs of fever from class and insisting on parents collecting them;
  • Requesting that parents reinforce healthy habits at home and keep their child at home should there be any signs of flu or a cold.

In general, when a case of transmittable disease is reported to school and confirmed by a doctor, the school office and nurse immediately notify parents in the affected section of the school and send relevant information.

The information not only outlines the symptoms that parents should watch for, but also reiterates the school’s expectation that children exhibiting signs of illness should be kept out of school, treated and then return upon the recommendation of a physician. We also encourage parents, in cases where multiple children have the same diagnosis, to have children tested to see if they might be carrying an illness as a proactive measure.

The World Health Organization (WHO) declares that Coronavirus is a public health emergency of international concern. It is clear that the Romanian Government will continue to monitor the Coronavirus situation in Wuhan and other areas and work with the World Health Organization and the international community to provide further updates.

Meanwhile the BSB campus is open and the community is encouraged to continue day-to-day activities as normal whilst treating each other, as always, with mutual respect.

What is Coronavirus?

A Coronavirus is a type of virus. As a group, Coronaviruses are common across the world.

Wuhan Novel Coronavirus is a new strain of Coronavirus first identified in Wuhan City, China.

What are the precautionary measures I should take?

The recommended steps people should take to protect themselves are the same as those to avoid flu and any other similar respiratory infections. You should maintain good hand, respiratory and personal hygiene and should avoid visiting animal and bird markets or people who are ill with respiratory symptoms.

The World Health Organisation recommendations in relation to the current Corona outbreak can be found at https://www.who.int/ith/2020-24-01-outbreak-of-Pneumonia-caused-by-new-coronavirus/en/ and include:

  • Frequently clean hands by using alcohol-based hand rub or soap and water;
  • When coughing and sneezing cover mouth and nose with flexed elbow or tissue – throw the tissue away immediately and wash hands;
  • Avoid close contact with anyone who has fever and cough;
  • If you have fever, cough and difficulty breathing seek medical care early and share previous travel history with your health care provider;
  • When visiting live markets in areas currently experiencing cases of Novel Coronavirus, avoid direct unprotected contact with live animals and surfaces in contact with animals;
  • The consumption of raw or undercooked animal products should be avoided. Raw meat, milk or animal organs should be handled with care, to avoid cross-contamination with uncooked foods, as per good food safety practices.

What is the advice on travel to/from China?

The government has formed an inter-ministerial committee to monitor and manage potential infections with the new Coronavirus, made up of specialists, under the coordination of ministers from the Ministry of Health, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Internal Affairs and the Ministry of Transport, Infrastructure and Communications, which has already taken a set of measures for airports as well as for healthcare facilities.

This committee has enhanced the monitoring of passengers travelling on flights to and from China, where the virus appears to have originated.

I’ve been to China in the past 14 days. What do I do?

If you have returned from China or any other country which has now had confirmed cases to Romania in the last 14 days, please notify us immediately prior to sending your child back into school, as we will require full medical clearance.

Additional advice from the Health Department includes:

  • Stay at home for 14 days after arriving from China and the other countries mentioned above, and do not go to your place of work, study or public areas - even if you have no symptoms.
  • Avoid having visitors to your home, where possible. It’s ok for friends, family or delivery drivers to drop off food.
  • Avoid using public transport or taxis.

Please follow this advice even if you do not have symptoms of the virus. While the risk to the Romanian population remains low, this is a highly precautionary measure to limit the potential spread of infection.

If you develop a fever, difficulty breathing or a cough, you should continue to follow the advice above. Please do not leave your home until you been given advice by a clinician.

What are the symptoms of Coronavirus?

It depends on the virus, but common symptoms include respiratory symptoms, fever, cough, shortness of breath, and breathing difficulties.

You should seek medical attention if you develop a fever, difficulty breathing or a cough within 14 days of visiting Wuhan, either in China or on your return to Romania.

When do we go to the doctor?
If the symptoms are specific to a mild cold and the patient does not suffer from other chronic diseases, then he can be treated at home. If the symptoms are worrying, with high fever, general alarming condition,contact the doctor immediately, especially if it concerns children, pregnant women, patients, the elderly or people with chronic diseases because they can develop complications.

Statistics in Bucharest

The staff in school medical offices monitor the health of children on a daily basis. On 28th, January 2020, 1400 cases of influenza had been reported to the public education system in Bucharest. The number is not worrying if we consider that in Bucharest there are approximately 249,000 preschoolers and students.[From The Administration of Hospitals and Medical Services of Bucharest website]

Where can I get support if I have concerns about my health?

If you develop symptoms in Romania, stay indoors and avoid contact with others where possible.

Medical support is available through your family doctor. If you may have had contact with someone who has Coronavirus or have any symptoms, you should contact your family doctor.

The Administration of Hospitals and Medical Services of Bucharest appeals to all parents, to recognize the symptoms and to refer to the family doctor for diagnosis and treatment.

This guidance is reviewed daily.