Child Care Centers – Working Together to Keep Kids & Employees Safe/Daily Updates

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Summary for most recent day of reporting in Connecticut

Day-to-day changes reflect newly reported cases, deaths, and tests that occurred over the last several days to week.All data in this report are preliminary; data for previous dates will be updated as new reports are received and data errors are corrected. Hospitalization data were collected by the Connecticut Hospital Association. Deaths* reported to either the OCME or DPH are included in the daily COVID-19 update.

*For public health surveillance, COVID-19-associated deaths include persons who tested positive for the virus that causes COVID-19 disease around the time of death (confirmed) and persons whose death certificate lists COVID-19 disease as a cause of death or a significant condition contributing to death (probable).

Category Text Total Change Direction Change
Laboratory Confirmed COVID-19 Cases 41,288       15*
COVID-19 Associated Deaths   3,803 +       34
Patients Currently Hospitalized with COVID-19   684       10
Patients Tested for COVID-19 229,769 +  4,407*

Charts represent the date the data were reported to the CT DPH.  Cases and deaths are cumulative over time.  Hospitalization data are collected by CT Hospital Association

Source: Department of Public Health

*The staff at the Department of Public Health have removed 356 cases and 808 tests in the past 24 hours, which were identified as duplicates in the system, affecting both test and overall case numbers. Since yesterday, there have been 341 new positive cases, and 5,215 new tests were reported.

                                                                                                               Total Reported

                                                                                                               To Date     Change from

                                                                                                                                        Yesterday

Local Results                                                                                                                  

Westport Residents COVID-19 Positive Reported to the State        283                     – 8*

Weston Residents COVID-19 Positive Reported to the State             62                     – 3*

A complete listing by town and county of all COVID-19 cases being reported by the Connecticut State Department of Health, and various analyses of those cases, can be found by following this link:

https://portal.ct.gov/-/media/Coronavirus/CTDPHCOVID19summary5272020.pdf?la=en

 

Child Care Centers – Working Together to Keep Kids & Employees Safe

The Westport Weston Health District has received a number of calls from child care operators looking for COVID related guidance.  As you know, information can change frequently as we learn more about COVID-19.  Both the State of Connecticut and the CDC have recently updated their guidelines during the pandemic.

The WWHD expects additional information in the coming weeks.  Per Governor Lamont’s roadmap for reopening CT released yesterday (https://portal.ct.gov/-/media/Office-of-the-Governor/News/20200526-Governors-Reopen-Report.pdf?la=en), “Childcare Guidance – Health Guidance for Employees” should be released in early June.  Please continue to reference the State of Connecticut’s Office of Early Childhood and the CDC for guidance, and discuss any questions with your nurse consultant should your facility use one.

State of Connecticut’s Office of Early Childhood (OEC)

The Office of Early Childhood notes the following:

  • Child care programs must maintain a group size of no more than 10 children. (For children under age 3, a group size of 8 is still required.) Each group of 10 children must be in a separate space.
  • Essential employees must wear face coverings. All child care providers are considered essential employees. Coverings can include masks, cloth face coverings, or other fabric that creates a barrier over the wearer’s mouth and nose.
  • Provide a health screening (temperature check) for all children and staff before entry into the child care location. Persons who have a fever of 100.40(38.00C) or above or other signs of illness should not be admitted to the facility. Encourage parents to be on the alert for signs of illness in their children and to keep them home when they are sick.

We encourage providers to visit the OEC website for a list of frequently asked questions, webinars, and other helpful information:  https://www.ctoec.org/covid-19/

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

The CDC features a number of resources, fact sheets, posters, decision tools and FAQs that administrators, teachers, and parents can reference when answering questions like “What should I do if a child or employee gets sick?” We encourage you to read through the information when developing protocols for operating safely.  Recommendations are updated as new information becomes available so it is prudent to check the website from the time to for new suggestions.  Some of the CDC recommendations are outlined below.

Drop Off/Pick Up

  • Wash hands frequently throughout the day and at drop off and pick up. Set up hand hygiene stations at the entrance so that children can clean their hands before they enter. If a sink with soap and water is not available, provide hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Keep hand sanitizer out of children’s reach and supervise use. If possible, place sign-in stations outside, and provide sanitary wipes for cleaning pens between each use.
  • Consider staggering arrival and drop off times and plan to limit direct contact with parents as much as possible.
  • Ideally, the same parent or designated person should drop off and pick up the child every day. If possible, older people such as grandparents or those with serious underlying medical conditions should not pick up children, because they are more at risk for COVID-19.

Social Distancing Strategies

  • If possible, child care classes should include the same group each day, and the same child care providers should remain with the same group each day.
  • Cancel or postpone special events such as festivals, holiday events, and special performances.
  • Consider whether to alter or halt daily group activities that may promote transmission.
    • Keep each group of children in a separate room.
    • Limit the mixing of children, such as staggering playground times and keeping groups separate for special activities such as art, music, and exercising.
    • If possible, at nap time, ensure that children’s naptime mats (or cribs) are spaced out as much as possible, ideally 6 feet apart. Consider placing children head to toe in order to further reduce the potential for viral spread.
  • Consider staggering arrival and drop off times and/or have child care providers come outside the facility to pick up the children as they arrive. Curb side drop off and pick up should limit direct contact between parents and staff members and adhere to social distancing recommendations.

Cleaning and Sanitizing

  • Keep and schedule and routinely clean, disinfect and sanitize surfaces and objects that are frequently touched, especially toys and games. Include doorknobs, light switches, classroom sink handles, countertops, nap pads, toilet training potties, desks, chairs, cubbies, and playground structures.
  • Use all cleaning products according to the directions on the label. For disinfection, most common EPA-registered, fragrance-free household disinfectants should be effective. If surfaces are dirty, they should be cleaned using a detergent or soap and water prior to disinfection. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for concentration, application method, and contact time for all cleaning and disinfection products.
  • All cleaning materials should be kept secure and out of reach of children.
  • Cleaning products should not be used near children, and staff should ensure that there is adequate ventilation when using these products to prevent children from inhaling toxic fumes.

Cleaning Toys and Bedding

  • Toys that cannot be cleaned and sanitized should not be used.
  • Toys that children have placed in their mouths or that are otherwise contaminated by body secretions or excretions should be set aside until they are cleaned by hand by a person wearing gloves. Clean with water and detergent, rinse, sanitize with an EPA-registered disinfectant, rinse again, and air-dry. Be mindful of items more likely to be placed in a child’s mouth, like play food, dishes, and utensils.
  • Do not share toys with other groups of infants or toddlers, unless they are washed and sanitized before being moved from one group to the other.
  • Children’s books, like other paper-based materials such as mail or envelopes, are not considered a high risk for transmission and do not need additional cleaning or disinfection procedures.
  • Only use bedding that can be washed. Keep each child’s bedding separate, and consider storing in individually labeled bins, cubbies, or bags. Cots and mats should be labeled for each child. Bedding that touches a child’s skin should be cleaned weekly or before use by another child.