Dealing with a case

In the rare event that there is a case in your setting, it is important to have a plan in place, as this can be a difficult and stressful time for staff and parents. Being prepared with a plan will give you and your team the confidence to deal with the situation as effectively as possible

MARM Childcare Providers lb 3 Planning ahead v2

Here are a number of pointers to help you to draw up a plan:

  • It is important to have easy access to numbers for your local public health team and to designate a senior member of staff to liaise with them if a case occurs
  • A doctor who specialises in the public health management of infectious diseases will advise you about what action to take and help you communicate the necessary information to staff and parents 
  • Each case is different and the action taken by public health will vary depending on the cause of the illness
  • The public health team will work with you to issue a letter to parents/carers to let them know about the situation
  • Reassure staff and parents that the likelihood of a second case of meningitis is extremely small. Parents should be advised to contact their GP if they are concerned or worried that their child is unwell
  • There is no reason to close your childcare setting. However, some parents may choose to keep their children at home
  • There is no reason to destroy or disinfect any equipment or toys that the child has touched

It is good practice to have an overall ‘infection control policy’ in place that includes information on meningitis and exclusion times for specific illnesses.

Please take a look at Public Health's "Health protection in schools and other childcare facilities" information for more details.