Early Learning and Childcare (ELC) providers are being encouraged to demonstrate their commitment to fighting deadly meningitis by signing up to the UK’s first Meningitis Aware Recognition Mark for the sector.
The resource, developed by charity Meningitis Now, aims to raise awareness of meningitis and meningococcal disease (meningitis and septicaemia) among staff, carers and parents, promote vaccine uptake and prepare childcare providers for dealing with a case.
Kelly Archer, Information and Projects Co-ordinator at the charity, said: “Babies and young children are the age group at greatest risk of contracting meningitis.
“With so many being in the care of childcare providers when parents are at work, we have developed this resource for the sector, to help them recognise the disease and, where required, take the appropriate action.
“Awareness can and does save lives and improve outcomes.”
The Meningitis Aware Recognition Mark (MARM) features a checklist. On completion each provider will be awarded the Mark, which demonstrates that they are providing information and training to staff about the signs and symptoms of meningitis and the action to take if a child is ill.
It also demonstrates they are aware of the importance of vaccination for the prevention of meningitis and are planning ahead by having a plan in place to deal with a case or an outbreak of meningitis.
Once awarded the recognition mark can be used across digital platforms and on a wide variety of marketing and publicity materials to help instil confidence in parents looking for a childcare provider.
Each childcare provider in the UK is invited to register. Once registered, Meningitis Now will send over details on what needs to be done to receive the Mark. When completed, the Mark will last until Summer 2020.
To find out more, access the toolkit and start working towards becoming a ‘meningitis aware’ ELC setting, please visit the Meningitis Now website
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