You will all no doubt be aware of the global coronavirus epidemic. In response to questions raised by a number of concerned parents, we write here to offer reassurances about the steps we are taking to provide awareness of any preventative measures recommended by Jersey and UK authorities to combat the spread of the virus.
We do so as a responsible Jersey company, which was founded here and whose workforce and operations are based on the Island. We are proud to be recognised as a valued member of the local business community and we share in the responsibility to tackle this issue head-on.
Whilst we understand that particular concerns might be raised in the direction of ThinkChinese given the nationality of our workforce, we assume that all local schools (and indeed other Jersey businesses) are circulating similar guidance given that the coronavirus epidemic has now been classified as a public health emergency.
We can confirm that no ThinkChinese staff members have recently returned from China and nor do we have any plans to travel to China before the virus is contained and travel routes between the UK and China (and within China itself) are normalised.
As soon as the seriousness of the situation was widely reported, we contacted a local medical professional to query whether any precautionary steps ought to be taken in respect of travel between the UK and Jersey. The advice at that point (approx. 10 days ago) was that these areas are low risk and therefore no precautions were necessary.
We have of course monitored developments very closely. We are not health professionals and can only relay the advice that is being provided by the relevant authorities, principally the World Health Organisation, as reported in numerous media outlets. Some very simple measures can and should be taken by every one of us:
- Always carry a tissue to catch coughs and sneezes and bin it after use.
- Wash hands with soap and water or use sanitiser gel.
For anyone returning from China in the past 14 days, the following is recommended:
- Stay indoors and avoid contact with other people as they would with other flu viruses.
- Avoid work, school and other public areas.
- Avoid visitors to their homes.
- Avoid using public transport or taxis.
- Be vigilant about hand washing and respiratory hygiene (using tissues).
The Government of Jersey has set up a dedicated page here.
Finally, I should take this opportunity to thank those of you who have kindly expressed concern about the welfare of the family and friends of ThinkChinese staff in China. We are comforted to know you are thinking of us.