As we open schools in September 2020, to maximise the protection of all pupils and staff, the schools have put a wide variety of protections in place including increased physical distancing, use of masks, increased environmental hygiene and arrangements to make personal hygiene including handwashing / sanitising as easy as possible. This will all help to keep pupils and staff safe in the school. Most importantly anyone who has symptoms consistent with Covid-19 are asked to stay home and contact their GP for assessment.
However, despite all of these protections it is possible that pupils and staff who have been infected with Covid-19 elsewhere, may bring it into the school because not all people who have Covid-19 have symptoms of Covid-19 - we call this "asymptomatic". The protective measures above all help to minimise the chance of infection spreading. If we are notified of a case of Covid-19 in a school setting, we investigate to see whether any spread has occurred.
Statutory Investigation and Control
We are notified of every case of Covid-19 including those who attend or work in schools. Our infection investigation and control teams then contact the school to carry out a Public Health Risk Assessment (PHRA) which will determine what actions are needed at that point to protect all. We review our PHRA as new information comes in.
If we need to carry out more investigations include testing of pupils and staff we request personal data under the Infectious Diseases Regulations 1981 (article 11) and we have the authority to get all necessary data (article 19). This is also allowed under the GDPR article 6 c,d & e and article 9 2, (i). We can also require actions to be carried out under this law (article 19) to inform and protect the health of others. Everybody is obliged to assist us with this and we thank you for your understanding and cooperation. You are helping us to keep the population safe.