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Latest update from the Director of Public Health for Lancashire

Good afternoon,
Please see the following advice that has been sent into schools by the Director of Public Health for Lancashire following the government's announcement that the COVID alert level has been raised from 3 to 4.
Thank you.
Miss Liggins Acting Deputy Head Teacher

As you will be aware, England has moved to Plan B measures in response to the rapid spread of
the new Omicron variant of Covid-19. On Sunday, the chief medical officers for England,
Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland recommended that the UK's coronavirus alert level was
raised from three to four following an exponential rise in the number of Omicron cases,
prompting the government to ramp up the delivery of the booster programme.

Testing
One of the most important things we can do to manage the virus through routine testing over the
festive period, and before the return to school in the New Year, using free, rapid lateral flow
tests. If you are planning to meet friends and family who do not live in your household, either in
an indoor or outdoor setting, then please take a lateral flow test before you do so.
Before your child returns to school, it is important that they take a lateral flow test. If test result is
positive, then isolate immediately and book a confirmatory PCR test. Only leave home to take
the test. You must also inform your child's school.
If your child has one or more of the following Covid-19 symptoms they must isolate and book a
PCR test immediately:
1. a high temperature
2. a new, continuous cough
3. loss or change to your sense of smell or taste
If your child's PCR test result is positive, they must isolate from the day their symptoms began
and for the next 10 days. If your child has other symptoms and are in doubt, take a PCR test and
keep them home like you normally would if they were unwell.
Close contacts
From Tuesday 14 December, people who are fully vaccinated and identified as a contact of
someone with Covid-19 – whether Omicron or not – should take a rapid lateral flow test every
day for 7 days to help slow the spread of Covid-19.
Read the government's guidance for contacts of people with confirmed Covid-19 infection here.
Additional measures
We are continuing to support our schools in maintaining good ventilation, infection prevention
and control measures. We will continue to follow the government's guidance, as set out in its
'Contingency framework: education and childcare settings'. This may mean that decisions are
taken by the school in collaboration with Lancashire's public health team to put in place
additional measures dependent on a settings' individual circumstances.
I would once again like to ask you to continue to support staff as they navigate this period.
January brings a new year, but it will also bring new challenges. By working together, I am sure
we can overcome them. Have a wonderful Christmas and all the best for the New Year.
Yours sincerely
Dr Sakthi Karunanithi

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