A Cambuslang mum has hit out at guidelines which are preventlng her young son’s return to nursery.

Gemma Barton had hoped three-year-old son, Arran, who has complex health issues which include a tracheostomy, would have gone back to nursery soon after it reopened in August.

However, NHS Lanarkshire’s guidance on AGP (aerosol generating procedures), means little Arran is unable to return and see his friends again.

Arran’s tracheostomy means he has issues with his breathing and has a tube that goes through his trachea in to his lungs.

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A risk assessment last week resulted in Gemma being told Arran’s return to Cathkin Community Nursery was “unsuitable”.

She told the Reformer : “We feel he is being discriminated against and being treated as if he is a risk to others.”

Gemma has been in touch with families in other parts of the country who have children with similar needs to Arran.

She said: “They have been able to have their child return to school or nursery.

“In Glasgow, there are children with tracheostomies returning because their health professionals have fought to have the guidelines altered to suit the needs of the child.

“Why can’t Arran return to nursery for the stimulation he needs and deserves?

"There are so many loopholes in the guidelines that they end up totally blurred.

“Sadly it’s Arran who is suffering from the lack of clarity. He deserves to be at nursery.”

Last Friday’s risk assessment was deemed unsuitable because there isn’t a dedicated area set up should Arran require treatment. for him to have suction administered if required.

Gemma continued: “The staff at the nursery have been great with their training in how to care for Arran.

“It’s not their fault, it’s the council and the health board who are preventing him from being there.

“He needs the stimulation that only nursery can provide him, I just feel it’s massively unfair he is missing out on this vital time for his development.”

In a bid to get Arran back to nursery, Gemma has contacted health professionals, local councillors and MSP Clare Haughey.

MSP Clare Haughey

Ms Haughey said: “The situation that the family are in is deeply upsetting and my heart goes out to them.

“I contacted the Scottish Government on their behalf last week and I am awaiting a response. Once I receive it, Mrs Barton and I will discuss any next steps.”

South Lanarkshire Council’s head of education, Anne Donaldson, said: “The Council is following the current Scottish Government guidance on the care of children with tracheostomies, which is informed by scientific and medical advice.

“Staff from education resources continue to work with the family and health professionals from NHS Lanarkshire to ensure the provision of a safe environment for Aaron’s early education.”

Lynsey Sutherland, associate nurse director, children’s services and family nurse partnership, South Lanarkshire Health and Social Care Partnership, added: “Our primary focus is supporting the safe return of any child who has particular health needs in returning to their nursery or school placement.

“We will continue to work in collaboration with children, parents and partners to explore safe solutions for delivering person-centred care.

“We appreciate that interpretation of guidance can be confusing but I would like to reassure the family that we will continue to seek solutions to support a safe return for this child, which is our priority.”