Managing Illness at Nursery

Time has flown by, the days are getting shorter, the evenings are getting colder and the season for coughs and colds have started. I would like to outline some of the things we do at the setting to ensure children are safe and well.

Promoting Good Health

personal hygiene

As a nursery setting we are expected to promote the good health of all children attending the nursery setting (EYFS, 2012). We spend a considerable amount of time teaching children healthy habits. This includes diet and nutrition, regular exercise, access to the outdoors and fresh air as well as educating children on personal hygiene. We encourage children to was hands at regular intervals during the day. We always wash hands after playing outside, messy play, after using the toilet and wiping noses as well as after eating. This helps to prevent the spread of infection.

Illness and infectious diseases

If children fall ill during the nursery day it is our policy to contact parents to collect their children. If children have been sent home from nursery they should be given ample time to recover and regain their strength to avoid a relapse after returning to nursery too soon. The nursery reserves the right to send home any children that are not well enough to participate in the full nursery day.

Should children be diagnosed with an infectious disease, we follow guidance from Public Health England in regards to exclusion periods for infectious diseases. All exclusion periods can be found in this document: Infection Control in schools and other childcare settings

Administering Medication in Nursery

Generally wherever possible, medication should be administered to children at home. We will act as a reasonably prudent parent would administering medication only where it would be detrimental to the child’s long term health not to. Please note that if we are not comfortable to do so we will not administer medication.

Non-Prescription Medication

(This includes temperature reducing medication, cough mixtures, herbal remedies etc.)

Non-prescription medication are generally not administered at the nursery. Where children are too unwell to get through the day without a dose of medication they are deemed too unwell to attend the setting.

Short term Prescription Medication

(includes antibiotics, eye drops etc.)

Where it would be detrimental to the child’s health and well-being not to administer certain medication, we will make the decision for example to complete a course of prescription medication. (If the child refuses to take the medicine we cannot force the child. We will call you for advice.)

Long Term Medication

(Includes epi-pens, insuline, asthma pumps, piriton etc.)

Long term medication will require the completion of an Individual Health Plan to ensure the setting will follow clear instructions in regards to maintaining your child’s health and well-being at all times. This should be supported by a letter from your child’s doctor. The administration of certain medications may also require specialist training for staff by the community nurse.

For all medication prior written consent is required and all administrations will be noted and parents are required to sign they have been made aware. All medications have to be in their original container clearly labelled with the child’s name, date of dispensing, dosage and instructions.

antibiotic resistance

Antibiotics – Important Information

We have been made aware of an increased amount of antibiotics being prescribed for young children. Antibiotics are a powerful medication designed to fight bacterial infections. You should never give your child antibiotics without having a physical consultation with the doctor and you should always follow the instruction and complete the course in full. For more information on the dangers of bacteria becoming resistant to antibiotics, please see the NHS Website.