ISLAMABAD – The health department of the Metropolitan Corporation Islamabad (MCI) has advised the Federal Directorate of Education (FDE) and Private Educational Institutions Regulatory Authority (PEIRA) to either close the educational institutions or conduct classes in the evening to avoid the severe impact of the heat wave in the city.
The Director General Health (DGH) of MCI Dr. Hassan Orooj has written a letter to the FDE and PEIRA advising to take preventive measures against heatstroke and review the school timings.
According to a letter available with The Nation, the DGH of MCI has advised educational institutes and regulatory departments to either close the schools during the heat wave to avoid the consequences of heatstroke or change the school timings to evening.
The MCI health department has advised to change the school timings to 5:30 pm to 8:30 pm.
The letter said, “Pakistan Met department has informed that the temperature of Islamabad will rise from 40 degree centigrade to 45 degree centigrade from 2nd to 3rd week of June, 2021. The phenomenon of global warming and subsequently extremely warm days in the past has taken thousands of lives. In 2015, almost 2000 deaths were recorded.”
It said that keeping in view the rising temperature of Islamabad, there is a high probability of occurrence of heatstroke cases in the city. The victims may include children and elderly who are especially vulnerable.
“It is further advised that schools and colleges under Federal Directorate of Education and PEIRA may either be closed in this scorching heat or timings of schools be changed from 5:30 pm to 8:30 pm in the evening,” the letter said.
The letter said further the school management be made responsible for assessing the classrooms and other premises on a daily basis. School routine should not expose children to high temperatures either in class or in the playground.
Providing the guidelines for heatstroke, the letter said that signs of early diagnoses be noted for each child in the classes (high temperature, weakness, muscle cramps, dry tongue, sunken eyes, high colour urine, dizziness etc). Appropriate first aid, referral/transport be ready in case of any emergency in the schools.
It said that the heatstroke signs include confusion, altered mental state, and slurred speech. In this situation, an emergency call is required immediately.
If any individual faces loss of consciousness, hot dry skin or profuse sweating and seizures, he must move to a cool area and remove outer cloths.
In case of very high body temperatures, the person should be cooled with water, cold compresses, an ice bath, or fans.
The guidelines also included that in case of heatstroke, the patient in first aid should be facilitated with air to speed cooling, cold, wet cloths should be placed on head neck, and armpits and a person should remain with him until the emergency medical services arrive.
Meanwhile, FDE revised the school timings for the government run schools and colleges after seven students fainted due to heat stroke in Maira Malpur middle school and directed that students will attend the institution only twice a week without consecutive attendance.