PSD Protocols for COVID-19

What happens if there is a case of COVID-19 in PSD? 

We anticipate there will be cases and outbreaks in PSD that will lead to health department-mandated quarantines and shifts from in-person to remote education at schools – and these will likely happen with little notice. PSD closely consults with the LCDHE and monitors the agency’s COVID-19 community data dashboard when making decisions about which educational phase to operate in. 

PSD follows current health guidance for K-12 schools from public health agencies, including: 

Processes when staff or students are exposed to or test positive for COVID-19  


Protocols

PSD protocols include information about when and how parents, guardians and staff should notify their school or supervisor if there is a positive COVID-19 case or possible exposure, as well as what students or staff should do if they are in isolation or quarantine. Note: Those who are feeling ill should not go to work or school.

The following district protocols are updated as needed to reflect current state and local public health guidance:

 

Returning to work or school in PSD following a postive COVID-19 symptom screen

PDF versions:
 Return to Learn  |  Arabic Return to Learn  |  Español Return to Learn

Note: This guidance is NOT intended for cases or close contacts of COVID-19. A confirmed COVID-19 case or close contact should follow public health isolation or quarantine instructions for return to school/work. 

The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment recently released new guidance for K-12 schools to guide response to the COVID-19 pandemic. A group of nurses and PSD staff evaluated the new guidance, which is now in effect and outlines when staff and students can return to work and school. Please note that PSD’s adopted guidance has been reviewed by the Larimer County Department of Health and Environment and is in some ways stricter than the state’s guidelines. As a reminder: PSD staff and students are required to wear a mask on school grounds. 

 

Critical symptoms 

  • Loss of taste or smell 

Critical symptom response:  

  • Follow home isolation for 10 days following symptom onset AND be 24 hours fever free without use of fever-reducing meds before returning to school.
  • COVID-19 test recommended. 


Major symptoms 

  • Feeling feverish, having chills, temperature of 100.4 F or greater 
  • New or worsening cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing

Major symptom response:  

  • If symptoms resolve within 24 hours of onset and stay resolved an additional 24 hours, return to school. (48 hours total) 
  • If symptoms DO NOT resolve within 24 hours, either: 
    • Follow home isolation for 10 days following symptom onset AND 24 hours fever free without use of fever-reducing meds before returning to school. 
    • Get a polymerase chain reaction, or PCR, COVID-19 test. If test is negative, return to school once symptom-free for 24 hours. If positive, follow home isolation for 10 days following symptom onset AND 24 hours fever free without use of fever-reducing meds before returning to school. 


Minor symptoms 

  • Sore throat 
  • Runny nose or congestion 
  • Muscle or body aches 
  • Headache 
  • Fatigue 
  • Nausea, vomiting 
  • Diarrhea 

Minor symptom response: 

  • If symptoms resolve within 24 hours of onset and stay resolved an additional 24 hours, return to school. (48 hours total) 
  • If symptoms resolve within 48 hours of onset and stay resolved an additional 24 hours, return to school. (72 hours total) 
  • If symptoms DO NOT resolve within 48 hours, either: 
    • Follow home isolation for 10 days following symptom onset AND 24 hours fever free without use of fever-reducing meds before returning to school. 
    • Get a polymerase chain reaction, or PCR, COVID-19 test. If test is negative, return to school once symptom-free for 24 hours. If positive, follow home isolation for 10 days following symptom onset AND 24 hours fever free without use of fever-reducing meds before returning to school. 

If there are questions about when a student can return to school, the school nurse or PSD health staff will make that determination. 

 

    How PSD and LCDHE work together on contact tracing and investigations


    What is contact tracing?

    Disease investigations are an important way that public health officials can help prevent the spread of disease in a community. When someone tests positive for a reportable condition, such as COVID-19, that test result is reported to state or local public health officials. Local public health staff receive that report and work with the patient to identify any close contacts (those who were within six feet for more than 10 minutes with a case) who may have been exposed to the disease and could become ill. This process is known as contact tracing. Learn more on the LCDHE website >> 

    Public health staff then notify exposed individuals (contacts) of their potential exposure as rapidly and sensitively as possible. Contacts are provided with education, information and support to:

    • Understand their risk and monitor themselves for illness
    • Separate themselves from others who have not been exposed.
    • Understand they could spread the infection to others even if they do not feel ill.  
       

    How does PSD works with Larimer County on investigations?

    • PSD's COVID-19 contact tracing liaison works closely to evaluate possible exposure to and positive cases of COVID-19 among PSD staff and students in partnership with LCDHE contact tracing experts assigned to PSD.  
    • For each case, PSD works with LCDHE to communicate to targeted staff and/or parents/guardians (i.e. LCDHE notifies people if they are close contacts and need to quarantine). 
    •  Please be aware that PSD may need to share some student information requested by LCDHE staff completing contact tracing investigations that includes but isn't limited to parent/guardian name, parent/guardian phone number(s), student name, student grade, student school of attendance, and student date of birth. PSD will never share parent/guardian or student home addresses or social security numbers. All disclosures will be made in accordance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act.
    • Answer the call: It’s imperative that families, students and staff answer the health department’s call and share timely, accurate information to help minimize outbreaks in our community. LCDHE and PSD maintain confidentiality.  


      Communications

      •  Evaluating on a case-by-case basis, PSD works with LCDHE to communicate important information to targeted staff and/or parents and guardians (i.e. LCDHE directly notifies people if they are identified as close contacts and need to quarantine).
      • PSD and LCDHE staff keep the identity of students and staff who test positive for or are believed to be exposed to COVID-19 confidential.