We have been asked by Auckland Regional Public Health Services for assistance to get the attached message to all schools . The message contains advice for teachers, students and parents who may be attending Polyfest next week.

Please share the message with your community.

For Teachers

Teachers accompanying students to Polyfest next week should take precautions to prevent the spread of infection during the mumps and whooping cough outbreak.

The large number of young people at the festival in close proximity, means bugs can easily spread through coughs and sneezes.

For teachers who have students in their care during Polyfest:

· Ensure they have their own drink bottles so that they don’t share drinks.
· Provide tissues and encourage the students to cover their coughs and sneezes.
· Provide hand sanitiser and prompt students to wash their hands before eating and after using the toilet.
· Check students are not ill with fever, headaches, muscle aches or cough.

For Students and Parents

· With a large number of students attending Polyfest, there is an increased risk of students catching infections like mumps, measles or whooping cough, through coughs, sneezing and sharing spit.
· Ask your parents if you are up to date with your vaccinations, your doctor or medical centre should have your records. Catch up with your vaccinations at your medical centre – they are free.
· Do not share water bottles or food.
· Wash hands before eating and after using the toilet.
· Cover your coughs and sneezes.
· If you develop fever, headache, swelling in the face, cheeks, or jaw, or cough – do not attend the event and see your family doctor.

Additional information – mumps and whooping cough

Early symptoms of mumps include fever, headache, muscle aches, tiredness, and loss of appetite. The salivary glands on one or both sides of the face, cheeks or jaw may become swollen and sore after two days. The mumps vaccination also protects against measles which is a serious and highly infectious illness.

Whooping cough starts like a cold with a runny nose, cough, and fever and is spread by coughing. After 7-10 days the cough becomes more severe and prolonged coughing spasms occur that may end with a whoop, dry retching or vomiting.

If you are concerned or have questions about these diseases call Healthline for advice on 0800 611 116.

Approved by the Principal
Soana Pamaka