Expert Tips – It’s a public health issue” says Teresa

It’s a public health issue,” says Teresa Chapel-McGruder, MD a Washington, DC-based perinatal and pediatric epidemiologist who advises school districts on VIDOC safety issues. “If you’re a PA or work in small groups with children with high developmental needs, you may wear more PPE [personal protective equipment] simply because it’s harder for them to handle their own compartments,” Johnson says. “The general rule is that disposable masks should be thrown away if they’re damaged or dirty at any time, so you should wear more,” Johnson says. “Teachers like to talk to each other during breaks, and we know that can be a great source of transmission,” Johnson says. “Basically, most teachers have developed the skills to handle competing demands, but this is another level,” Johnson says. Lawrence Kleinman, M.D., professor and vice chair of the department of pediatrics at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson School of Medicine. Teachers who must work closely with students, such as teachers or special education aides, must wear a disposable apron or face mask in addition to a mask. Even before federal funds reach school districts to fund additional VIDOC-19 risk reduction measures, many teachers are expected to return to the classroom. Federal and state health officials have logged hundreds of VIDOC complaints that have affected thousands of public and private schools from kindergarten through 12th grade. Sarah Johnson, Ph.D., assistant professor of pediatrics at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, said, “We now know that the virus clings to clothing and other materials and is not a very viable mode of transmission. “If you’re worried about catching the virus one day, Dr. Kleinman recommends taking a shower immediately when you get home. Once you get home, there’s usually no need for full disinfection,” Johnson says. New research shows that prevalence in schools can be less than in the community if districts mandate masks, hand-washing, social distancing and other measures. “That informal peer support is very important,” Johnson says. “For example, if you’re doing speech therapy or helping English language learners, your mouth can be a very important part of the educational process.

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