United Arab Emirates, Dubai, December 20, 2017: The Dubai Health Authority's Schools and Educational Institutions Health Unit recently held a workshop for school staff to educate them on skills needed to assist children with health conditions.
More than 400 participants including doctors, nurses, teachers and the school management team attended the workshop.
The training was conducted by school health experts, members from the Noor Dubai Foundation, doctors from Dubai Diabetes Centre, experts from the Mental Health Program, DHA's public health and safety department and primary healthcare sector. International school health experts from the UK also took part in the workshop.
Dr Manal Taryam, CEO of Primary Healthcare at the DHA, said: “The aim of holding such regular workshops stems from the DHA's vision of providing high quality medical services for students and regular training help keep school staff up-to-date with the latest in managing the health, social, behavioral and emotional needs of children.”
She added that the training is in line with the DHA's school health policy.
Dr Nusaiba Shaker Al Behandy, Acting-Head of School and Educational Institutions Health Unit at the DHA, said: “ This workshop was specifically tailored to discuss how to assist students with medical conditions. We discussed at length how to support people of determination; this includes students who are grappling with learning disabilities and those who are physically challenged. We discussed the skills that the school staff must have or develop to assist such children.
Al Behandy, said: “The workshop discussed all aspects of autism and disorders such as ADHD, which often can be confused for lack of attention span but once identified can help a child grow in their confidence and learning journey. Creating a supportive environment to bring out the best in people of determination is our duty and the workshop provided information on how school staff can achieve this.”
The workshop also discussed at length ways to manage medical emergencies for children with diabetes, visually impaired children, those with severe allergies etc.
Dr Hamid Y Hussein, Deputy Director of School and Educational Institutions Health Unit at the DHA discussed the skills needed by school staff to manage children with Autism in the most positive manner and to help them flourish the best they can.
Dr Waleed Hasan Al Faisal, public health specialist in the schools and educational institutions health unit at DHA's primary health care sector, highlighted the importance of health screening and individualized medical care for pupils. In terms of diabetic care tailored for each pupil, he said: “Children with diabetes need proper management in a school setting. Health risks such as hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) must be tackled promptly and effectively. Additionally, the ability to learn is compromised when blood glucose is not within a reasonable range. Therefore, the workshop discussed the importance of individualized and student-specific school health team diabetes management and treatment plan. This includes knowing the target blood sugar range of the pupil, knowing the child's specific hypoglycemia range, insulin or other medication used, meal and snack plans, how to manage physical activities, signs and symptoms to identify hypoglycemia etc.”
Dr David Cremonesini, Consultant Pediatrician and expert in allergy and respiratory disorders discussed effective asthma management in schools.
The workshop also discussed allergies at length, the critical need to ensure the school follows a strict no-nut policy and the administration and availability of EpiPen. (epinephrine injection)
Dr Taryam, concluded: “Every kid needs to have opportunities in life and school is an important space where children spend several hours per day. It's only fair that the school environment should be safe, one that helps children be comfortable and thrive.”