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Responding to Hot Button Health Issues in Child Care

 Responding to Hot Button Health Issues in Child Care

With the recent outbreak of measles across the US and a scare right down the road from Wake at a Durham child care center, communities are navigating issues around public health as parental preferences and individual children’s needs are balanced with the safety and requirements of child care centers. Vaccinations are just one of the hot button topics affecting child care experiences for young children. WCSS does not set policy around vaccinations or other health issues. Instead, we work to support families and the centers that serve them to successfully meet requirements through education and improved practices.

WCSS-funded Child Care Health Consultants (CCHC) provides on-site health, safety, and nutrition consultation from registered nurses in child care facilities. Their support helps bridge parents’ preferences and a child’s health needs with policies and practices to yield learning environments we can all feel good about. The diversity of needs in a child care center grows as the number of children enrolled increases. Many of these are academic and social-emotional needs, but often health care issues are of concern. The mix of options available to address these needs can underscore the value of education for the center providers and allow them to advocate for children.

National Immunization Awareness Month is observed in August; however, Wake County makes this a priority year-round – and CCHC is supporting the effort as part of its work.

Wake County Human Services recognized a need to improve practices around vaccination record keeping and provided a special training for over 80 Wake County child care centers. CCHC nurses will incorporate these practices into their work supporting child care centers as part of ensuring health plans and required documentation are in place. This system of support yields many opportunities to help both families and centers navigate requirements, understand exceptions, and create health plans that keep all participants healthy.


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