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Schools & Child Care

Infectious Diseases in Schools

Reporting diseases of public health significance

School principals are legally required to report suspect or confirmed Diseases of Public Health Significance (PDF 120KB) to their local health unit. This list includes such diseases, please report it to us as soon as possible using the form below:

We investigate all reports of diseases of public health significance in Simcoe County and Muskoka. During investigations, we may contact the school principal (or designate) to request additional information to inform our assessment. If the disease is confirmed, we will conduct further assessment to determine the risk to others.

Notifying staff, students and families

If we identify that there is a risk to other members of the school community, we will work together with the school principal to ensure that students, families, and school employees are properly notified.

Schools are asked not to communicate information about infectious diseases without checking with us. This helps to ensure that the public receives accurate information and follow-up recommendations (e.g. to seek medical attention) for protecting themselves and their families. Here are sample newsletter inserts that can be used to support your messaging in consultation with us:

Reportable Disease - Newsletter Insert

[School] has been informed that a person in our school has or may have [reportable disease]. The Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit has been notified. The health unit investigates all possible and confirmed diseases of public health significance in Simcoe County and Muskoka. Due to privacy laws, the school and the health unit confirms that a person does have [reportable disease], they will determine who is at risk and ensure that staff, families and students, are provided with the appropriate information and any follow-up (i.e. seek medical attention, immunization) to protect themselves and their families.

The health unit encourages parents to ensure their child's immunizations are up to date in order to protect them from many common childhood illnesses. It is also important that parents notify the health unit when their child receives new immunizations by phone at 1-877-721-7520 or online at:  http://www.simcoemuskokahealth.org/Topics/Immunization/ImmunizationReporting.aspx.

Non-Reportable Disease - Newsletter Insert

There is an increase of [non-reportable] at [school]. This illness is not reportable to the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit; however, parents can find more information about [non-reportable disease] by visiting the health unit's website at: www.simcoemuskokahealth.org/Topics/RaisingChildren.

Due to privacy laws, we will not release personal or identifying information about any staff or student who is ill.

Infection Prevention and Control

Schools are encouraged to follow infection prevention and control recommendations, in order to help prevent the spread of illness.

Additional Resources

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