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3.6.5 Infestations

SCOPE OF THIS CHAPTER

This procedure applies to children placed in foster care and residential care managed by the authority, but the principles apply to the placement of every Looked After Child. Therefore, where a Looked After Child is placed with parents, relatives or friends or in placements not managed by the authority, the social worker must ensure these or other adequate procedures are applied.


Contents

  1. Monitoring and Checks
  2. Head Lice or Fleas
  3. Scabies
  4. Notifications


1. Monitoring and Checks

It is acceptable for routine precautions to be undertaken to avoid infestations of head lice, fleas, scabies etc. However, this may not include the undertaking of routine checks of children, for infestations, unless Consent has been given.

This Consent should normally be incorporated into individual children’s Placement Plan/Placement Information Records.


2. Head Lice or Fleas

If it is suspected that children may be infested with head lice, the following measures should be taken:

Should anyone else in the placement become infested with head lice, the staff/carers must inform their manager, who will decide what actions are necessary.

Additionally, the medical practitioner may decide it is necessary to initiate fumigation procedures in the home, particularly with regards to fleas. Where this is necessary, the staff/carers can agree to the fumigation and should inform their manager of this as soon as possible.


3. Scabies

If it is suspected that a child may be affected by scabies, a medical examination should be sought for confirmation of the infection. Where Scabies is confirmed, parents/social workers should be informed.

For Short Break services any symptoms must be reported to the parents with advice to seek a medical examination. The child should return home until medical advice has been sought.

Treatment consists of two treatments of topical application one week apart. Children should not attend school or other activities until after the first treatment.

Schools or other activities should be notified of the infection to enable them to be vigilant to the signs of scabies and act accordingly to prevent the spread of the infection.

Additionally, the medical practitioner may decide that it is necessary to initiate fumigation procedures in the home. Where this is necessary, the staff/carers can agree to the fumigation and should inform their manager of this as soon as possible afterwards.


4. Notifications

Infestations must be reported to the manager, the child’s parent(s) and social worker.

In addition, where, in the opinion of the medical practitioner attending the child, the infectious disease is sufficiently serious, notification must be made to the Designated Manager (Serious Illness), the Regulatory Authority, the Health Protection Agency and the placing authority.

End