East Hawaii News

DOE, DOH Develop Heat Illness-Related Guidelines

September 22, 2015, 3:23 PM HST
* Updated September 22, 3:24 PM
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As record high temperatures continue to scorch the state, the Department of Education and the Department of Health together created detailed guidance for parents, schools, and health aides to help combat and prevent heat illness.

Among the heat illnesses of concern are early heat stress, heat cramps, heat syncope, heat exhaustion, and heat stroke.

“It was important to collaborate with public health professionals to offer sound advice to schools on how to better deal with the extreme heat teachers and students have been experiencing in classrooms,” said DOE superintendent Kathryn Matayoshi.

All students will go home with a letter providing recommendations on how parents can assist in the preparation for hot days.

In addition to the letter, schools will receive guidance to help identify heat illness-related symptoms and learn what action steps should be taken if a staff member becomes sick.

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Classroom posters are also planned for every classroom, health room, and school office of public schools. The posters will help identify symptoms and treatments.

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The guidelines were put together by Department of Health public health experts.

“The Department of Health is happy to have been able to provide expertise and assistance on developing this important guidance for teachers and students,” said Dr. Virginia Pressler, DOH director. “We believe working together to better inform parents and school personnel will help prevent heat illness cases.”

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