Child Illness Policy
At the Y, we understand the importance of health and wellbeing and strive to reduce the spread of communicable illnesses through proven best practices. Annually the Y partners with health consultants to review health and safety policies stipulated by MN DHS Rule 3 to ensure the best possible outcomes.
If a Child Becomes Ill at the Center
All efforts will be made to make your child as comfortable as possible. Team members will gather information and work with the parent/guardian to make a decision in the child’s best interest. Certain symptoms can be indicative of infection or communicable illness, in which case the child will be separated from the classroom with supervision to prevent the spread of illness. Parents/guardian will be contacted to pick up the child. Team members will continue to assess the child’s condition. If the team member assessment of the child’s condition warrants medical attention, the child’s health care provider, or if necessary, local emergency will be notified.
If Your Child Has a Communicable Illness
Parent must notify the center within 24 hours. A notice (without specific names) will be posted for parent information. This notice will include the illness, incubation period, early signs to watch for, and exclusion recommendations. The center will notify the Public Health Department within 24 hours should an occurrence of a "reportable disease" take place.
Exclusion is often necessary to prevent the spread of illness. Exclusion also applies to children who have not been immunized for conscientiously held beliefs or medical contradictions. The center office has a list of the diseases for which this applies. Children cannot be admitted to the center with any of the following symptoms or illnesses:
- Fever: It is YMCA policy that children are fever-free, before fever reducing medication for 24 hours before returning to the center. A fever is defined as an axillary (under the arm) temperature of 100 degrees or higher (101 degrees orally/102 degrees rectally).
- Signs/Symptoms of Possible Severe Illness: Child must be excluded until a medical exam indicates the child may return if the child exhibits unusual fatigue, uncontrolled coughing, irritability, persistent crying, difficulty breathing, wheezing, etc.
- Uncontrolled Diarrhea: Child must be excluded with an increased number of stools compared with his/her normal pattern, watery stools, and/or decreased stool form that cannot be contained by the diaper or use of the toilet. Child may return after a medical exam indicates that it is not a communicable illness. A child whose diarrhea cannot be contained in a diaper or use of a toilet will be excluded until these symptoms are no longer evident for 24 hours.
- Vomiting: Child must be excluded until vomiting has stopped for 24 hours.
- Mouth Sores with Drooling: Child must be excluded until a medical exam indicates that the child may return.
- Rash: Child must be excluded until a medical exam indicates that it is not a communicable illness.
- Eye Drainage: A child is excluded for 24 hours after treatment is started for a contagious conjunctivitis or pus drainage.
- Unusual Color: A child is excluded until a medical diagnosis rules out Hepatitis A.
- Significant Respiratory Distress: Excessive coughing, wheezing or difficulty breathing.
- Bacterial Infection: This includes strep, ear infection, or impetigo; child is excluded until 24 hours of antibiotic therapy have been completed.
- Any contagious illness: All children must be excluded with any reportable illness such as scabies, chicken pox, ring worm, etc., that is untreated and contagious to others.
- Head Lice: A child must be excluded until all lice, lice eggs, and egg cases are removed. Our center enforces a "no nit" policy. If nits are present upon the child’s return to the center, the parent will be called to pick up the child for treatment or follow-up.
- Unable to Participate: If the child is unable to participate in everyday center activities with reasonable comfort, or who requires more care than the team members can provide without compromising the health and safety of other children, he/she will be excluded from the center.