Blood-Borne Viruses

From Term 1 2017, Victorian government and Catholic schools will use the new Victorian Curriculum F-10. Curriculum related information is currently being reviewed and may be subject to change.

For more information on the curriculum, see:
The Victorian Curriculum F–10 - VCAA

Purpose of this policy

To outline how schools deal with blood-borne viruses (BBV). BBV's include:

  • Hepatitis B and C
  • Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV).

Policy

Schools must:

  • protect the privacy of students who have a BBV
  • avoid any form of discrimination of students with a BBV
  • provide BBV prevention education as part of the health education program in line with the Victorian Essential Learning Standards.

See: Other resources

Risk of infection

The Department of Human Services advises as long as basic hygiene, safety, infection prevention and control and first aid procedures are followed:

  • risks of contracting blood born viruses are negligible
  • staff have a duty to provide first aid to students or other staff with a BBV in the classroom, physical education and sports settings and on school grounds.

Privacy

The BBV status of a student is a private matter between a student and his/her fmaily doctor. When parents/guardians report the BBV status to the principal, the principal must:

  • respect the student’s confidentiality
  • keep the information from being accessible from others without:
    • parent/guardian consent
    • student consent, if appropriate.

Note: the above privacy principles also apply to school staff.

See: Information Privacy within Related policies

Discrimination

The Equal Opportunity Act 1995 and the Equal Opportunity (Gender Identity and Sexual Orientation) Act 2000 protect students from victimisation or discrimination based on BBV infection. Examples of discrimination include:

  • refusing to enrol the student
  • excluding the student from attendance
  • denying access to school programs or activities
  • failing to protect the student from harassment or victimisation
  • breaching confidentiality related to the BBV status
  • differential application of school rules.

Schools should consult with the Communicable Disease Prevention and Control Unit within the Department of Health with questions or concerns about disclosure or exclusion, see: Communicable Disease Prevention and Control Unit

Related policies

Related legislation

  • Equal Opportunity Act 1995
  • Equal Opportunity (Gender Identity and Sexual Orientation) Act 2000

Other resources

See: