HEALTH AND WELLNESS
The risk of spreading COVID-19 increases as students and staff members have close contact or prolonged interactions with increasing numbers of people. COVID-19 is mostly spread person-to-person by respiratory droplets released when people talk, cough, or sneeze. It is thought that the virus may spread when inhaled or spread to hands from a contaminated surface and then making hand contact with the eyes; nose; or mouth, causing infection.
When interacting with others who are not suspected or confirmed to have COVID-19, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommends following everyday prevention actions. Therefore, personal prevention practices such as social distancing; handwashing; hand sanitizing; not touching eyes, nose, or mouth; wearing cloth face coverings; staying home when sick; and environmental practices, such as frequent cleaning and disinfection of frequently touched surfaces, are important principles.
To lower the risk of infection transmission, schools must promote healthy behaviors that reduce the spread of illness.
Social distancing, also called “physical distancing,” means keeping space between yourself and other people outside of your home. To practice social or physical distancing:
- Stay at least 6 feet (about 2 arms’ length) from other people.
- Do not gather in large groups and avoid close contact with other people (close contact is being within 6 feet of another person for 15 minutes or longer).
- Stay out of crowded places and avoid mass gatherings.
- Use distance learning methods for general assemblies, special events, and other activities that would avoid large gatherings of 50 or more students.
Social Distancing: Keep a Safe Distance to Slow the Spread
Handwashing and the use of alcohol-based hand sanitizers helps to prevent infections and reduce the number of viable pathogens on the hands. Access to handwashing supplies is essential. These supplies include soap, hand sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol (for parents and older children who can safely use hand sanitizer), paper towels, tissues, and no-touch trash cans.
Handwashing is the single most effective infection control intervention (CDC). Hand hygiene is performed by washing hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or using hand sanitizer with 60-95 percent alcohol content until the product dries. If hands are visibly soiled, use soap and water.
While cloth face coverings are not considered personal protective equipment (PPE), they are useful to prevent the spread of disease. Face coverings may be challenging for students (especially younger students) to wear in all-day settings, such as school. Cloth face coverings are meant to protect other people in case the wearer is unknowingly infected but does not have symptoms. Cloth face coverings are not surgical masks, respirators, or other medical PPE. Cloth face coverings should be washed daily in a washing machine.
Do not touch the face (eyes, nose, or mouth) at any time, including while wearing a cloth face covering and wash hands frequently.
Note: Cloth face coverings should not be placed on:
- Children younger than 2 years old.
- Anyone who has trouble breathing, is unconscious, is incapacitated, or has a disability that prevents them from wearing a cloth face covering or otherwise unable to remove the cloth face covering without assistance.
- Students unable to wear a face mask due to medical concerns (medical concerns not addressed in the exemption portion of the Nevada Medical Advisory Guidance, will require a note from the Licensed Health Care Provider for access to CCSD property).
Contact Tracing of a COVID‐19 Exposure or Case Positive Student or Employee
Schools play a critical role in contact tracing. Contact tracing, a core disease control measure employed by local and state health department personnel for decades, is a key strategy for preventing further spread of COVID-19 (CDC, 2020). SNHD works closely with CCSD Health Services to prevent the spread of disease in schools and monitor any outbreaks or community spread.
- Contact tracing is part of the process of supporting patients with suspected or confirmed infection. Contact Tracing
- Contacts are only informed that they may have been exposed to a patient with the infection, they are not told the identity of the patient who may have exposed them (due to privacy laws).
- Contacts are provided with education, information, and support to understand their risk, what they should do to separate themselves from others who are not exposed, monitor themselves for illness, and the possibility that they could spread the infection to others even if they themselves do not feel ill.
- In contact tracing, Southern Nevada Health District (SNHD) staff work with families or staff members to help them recall everyone with whom they have had close contact during the timeframe while they may have been infectious.
- SNHD staff will notify exposed individuals (contacts) of their potential exposure as rapidly and sensitively as possible.
Covid-19 Testing Sites