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Exclusion for infectious diseases - keeping sick children away from others

infectious; disease; child; exclusion; immunise; immunisation; vaccine; vaccination; contagious; exclude ;


The spread of some infectious diseases is lessened by keeping a person who is known to have the infection away from others who are at risk of catching it.

For this reason there are regulations about when a child can go back to school, childcare, etc when they have one of these diseases.

Exclusion means when the child should not be at school, preschool or childcare. The need for exclusion depends on:

  • the ease with which the infection can be spread
  • the ability of the infected person to follow hygiene precautions (young children cannot do this)
  • and to a lesser extent, the severity of the disease.

It is important to remember that any child who feels unwell should not be at school, preschool, childcare, and any other place where they could pass on the infection:

  • to help protect other children and staff 
  • and because they need rest and care to get well.


Department of Health, South Australia
'Exclusion from child care, pre-school, school and work'.

Note: There are separate topics about most of these illnesses on this site.

The topic Feeling sick has suggestions for caring for a sick child.

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The information on this site should not be used as an alternative to professional care. If you have a particular problem, see a doctor, or ring the Parent Helpline on 1300 364 100 (local call cost from anywhere in South Australia).

This topic may use 'he' and 'she' in turn - please change to suit your child's sex.

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