SHARJAH // The Health Ministry has urged the Sharjah authorities to improve meals and supervision of health services at private schools after a report showed there were 1,911 cases of contagious diseases among pupils in the Northern Emirates in the 2007/08 school year. The report recommended that the authorities draw up laws to improve the quality of feeding and supervision of private schools' health services, as well as provision of medical specialists for schools. It also recommended establishing a database linked to regional clinics and school health centres.
The annual report on contagious diseases by the ministry's central department of school health was based on screening 30,494 of the 30,556 pupils registered at schools in the Northern Emirates. It listed 1,699 cases of chickenpox, 25 cases of scabies, 10 of hepatitis A and seven hepatitis B. There were eight cases of measles, four of food poisoning, four cases of fever and several cases of mumps and tetanus.
The report was distributed to participants at a medical workshop in Sharjah for school administrators organised by Sharjah medical zone. It said school clinics treated 5,403 students for various ailments. Sheikh Mohammed al Qasimi, the director of Sharjah medical zone, told the workshop that schools needed to pay increasing attention to adolescents by providing courses to improve their social skills and their intellectual and emotional adjustment to ensure their healthy development.
The ministry has a comprehensive health programme for schools, including health services, health education, school nutrition, physical education and mental health services, he said. firstname.lastname@example.org