Guidance on Illness in School

Infection or complaintRecommended period to be kept away from school, nursery or childmindersComments
Athlete’s footNoneAthlete’s foot is not a serious condition. Treatment is recommended
ChickenpoxUntil all vesicles have crusted overSee: Vulnerable Children and Female Staff –Pregnancy
Cold sores, (Herpes simplex)NoneAvoid kissing and contact with the sores. Cold sores are generally mild and self-limiting
German measles(rubella)*Four days from onset of rash (as per “GreenBook”)Preventable by immunisation (MMR x2 doses). See: Female Staff – Pregnancy
Hand, foot and mouthNoneContact your local HPT if a large number of children are affected. Exclusion may be considered in some circumstances
ImpetigoUntil lesions are crusted and healed, or 48 hours after starting antibiotictreatmentAntibiotic treatment speeds healing and reduces the infectious period
Measles*Four days from onset of rashPreventable by vaccination (MMR x2). See: Vulnerable Children and Female Staff –Pregnancy
Molluscum contagiosumNoneA self-limiting condition
RingwormExclusion not usually requiredTreatment is required
Roseola (infantum)NoneNone
ScabiesChild can return after first treatmentHousehold and close contacts require treatment
Scarlet fever*Child can return 24 hours after starting appropriate antibiotictreatmentAntibiotic treatment is recommended for the affected child
Slapped cheek/fifth disease. ParvovirusB19None (once rash has developed)See: Vulnerable Children and Female Staff –Pregnancy
ShinglesExclude only if rash is weeping and cannot be coveredCan cause chickenpox in those who are not immune, ie have not had chickenpox. It is spread by very close contact and touch. If further information is required, contact your local PHE centre. See: Vulnerable Childrenand Female Staff – Pregnancy
Warts and verrucaeNoneVerrucae should be covered in swimming pools, gymnasiums and changing rooms
Infection or complaintRecommended period to be kept away from school, nursery orchildmindersComments
Diarrhoea and/or vomiting48 hours from last episode of diarrhoea orvomiting
E. coli O157 VTEC Typhoid* [and paratyphoid*] (enteric fever) Shigella(dysentery)Should be excluded for48 hours from the last episode of diarrhoea. Further exclusion may be required for some children until they are no longer excretingFurther exclusion is required for children aged five years or younger and those who have difficulty in adhering to hygiene practices. Children in these categories should be excluded until there is evidence of microbiological clearance. This guidance may also apply to some contacts who may also require microbiological clearance. Please consult your local PHE centre for further advice
CryptosporidiosisExclude for 48 hours from the last episode of diarrhoeaExclusion from swimming is advisable for two weeks after the diarrhoea has settled
Infection or complaintRecommended period to be kept away from school, nursery orchild mindersComments
ConjunctivitisNonef an outbreak/cluster occurs, consult your local PHE centre
Diphtheria*Exclusion is essential. Always consult with your local HPTFamily contacts must be excluded until cleared to return by your local PHE centre. Preventable by vaccination. Your local PHE centre will organise any contact tracingnecessary
Glandular feverNone
Head liceNoneTreatment is recommended only in cases where live lice have been seen
Hepatitis A*Exclude until seven days after onset of jaundice(or seven days after symptom onset if nojaundice)In an outbreak of hepatitis A, your local PHE centre will advise on control measures
Infection or complaintRecommended period to be kept away from school, nursery or child mindersComments
Flu (influenza)Until recoveredSee: Vulnerable Children
Tuberculosis*Always consult your local PHE centreRequires prolonged close contact for spread
Whooping cough* (pertussis)Five days from starting antibiotic treatment, or21 days from onset ofillness if no antibiotic treatmentPreventable by vaccination. After treatment, non-infectious coughing may continue for many weeks. Your local PHE centre will organise any contact tracing necessary
Hepatitis B*, C*, HIV/AIDSNoneHepatitis B and C and HIV are bloodborne viruses that are not infectious through casual contact. For cleaning of body fluid spills see:Good Hygiene Practice
Meningococcal meningitis*/ septicaemia*Until recoveredMeningitis C is preventable by vaccination There is no reason to exclude siblings or other close contacts of a case. In case of an outbreak, it may be necessary to provide antibiotics with or without meningococcal vaccination to close school contacts. Your local PHE centre will advise on any action isneeded
Meningitis* due to other bacteriaUntil recoveredHib and pneumococcal meningitis are preventable by vaccination. There is no reason to exclude siblings or other close contacts of a case. Your local PHE centre willgive advice on any action needed
Meningitis viralNoneMilder illness. There is no reason to exclude siblings and other close contacts of a case. Contact tracing is not required
MRSANoneGood hygiene, in particular handwashing and environmental cleaning, are important to minimise any danger of spread. If further information is required, contact your localPHE centre
MumpsExclude child for five days after onset of swellingPreventable by vaccination (MMR x2 doses)
ThreadwormsNoneTreatment is recommended for the child and household contacts
TonsillitisNoneThere are many causes, but most cases are due to viruses and do not need an antibiotic

This Table was taken from Public Health England’s Website.

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