School praised as Portsmouth children are vaccinated against Hepatitis A

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PUPILS at three more schools in Portsmouth have been vaccinated against hepatitis A.

Public Health England decided to vaccinate a group of Year 6 children at Isambard Brunel Juniors in North End, Portsmouth after a case was discovered in late January.

This was extended to all pupils and staff at the school, neighbouring Meredith Infant School and Izzies Nursery School and was carried out yesterday.

Iain Gilmour, headteacher at Isambard Brunel Juniors, said: ‘We carried out an assembly a couple of days ago to tell the children why Public Health England wanted to carry out the vaccines.’

PHE decided to take action against the virus after one child at the junior school and four members of the pupil’s family contracted it.

‘In the assembly I asked the children if they were scared about being injected and most of them raised their hands – I’m glad I wasn’t the only one,’ said Mr Gilmour.

Children from the juniors carried teddy bears and other cuddly toys with them to hold while they were injected.

Mr Gilmour added: ‘We also had a couple of parents come and sit with the children but all the pupils got through the day with ease.’

Izzies Nursery School carried out vaccinations in the morning with a number of parents coming in.

It comes after children at Devonshire Infants and Fernhurst Juniors, two Southsea schools, were vaccinated in November after children were diagnosed with the disease, which can cause nausea and vomiting and, in extreme cases, jaundice.

Mr Gilmour thanked his staff saying: ‘The teachers and other staff have been brilliant. They have reassured the children that everything will be fine and kept them calm.’

Parents praised the school’s for their action.

Kerry Harrington, whose son is in Year 1 at Meredith Infants said: ‘The school has done really well. I’m impressed on how quickly they have responded.’

But other parents thought that the school could have reacted quicker.

Steve Singh’s son is in Year 3 at Isambard Juniors ‘The school should have done something earlier, when they found out about the case they should have vaccinated all the children then.’