Gastro and Viruses in Childcare

Got kids going to childcare and worried about them catching gastro, flu and viruses?  This may help.

Your child has been taught to wash their hands properly in their childcare centre and educators are experts in the art of keeping surfaces clean. Why then does there seem to be a continual spike in viral gastro outbreaks at childcare centres around the country and what can you do about it?

Childcare centres have a strong focus on hygiene, but the nature of norovirus and the habits of young children can make gastro hard to manage.  Prof Raina MacIntyre from the University of NSW Kirby Institute says, “You can find the highly contagious norovirus on the walls, tap, sink, everywhere, so unless you’re thoroughly cleaning and disinfecting everything around you, that risk will still persist”.

Shayne Kuyper and his partner enrolled their two-year-old daughter, Poppy, in daycare when she was 13 months old. She had never been sick before daycare.

“She hasn’t had a single week without coming home with something since,” Kuyper says. “She’s had gastro seven times this year.”

Viral gastroenteritis can be spread through coughing and sneezing and is introduced through the mouth.  It is also spread through contamination of hands, objects or food with infected faeces or vomit.

Effective environmental cleaning involves the routine cleaning of surfaces, door handles, and toys with detergent and water, then rinsing and drying.  Now there is a way to effectively help to protect your child for longer, including their skin, clothes, toys and surfaces at child care and at home.

Not only is gastro a problem for the children but also the childcare educators, particularly in their first year in early education, contributing to a high staff turnover.  For many, they have used all their sick leave entitlements, meaning they may come to work sick.

Protocol for cleaning

Surfaces need to be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected on a regular basis to minimise germs.  We go one step further by first ensuring the surfaces are thoroughly cleaned and disinfected using non-toxic innovation products.  Then all surfaces, including high-touch surfaces such as handles, taps, switches, tables, chairs, toys, etc can be protected long term with BioProtect.  Great for childcare centres, homes and workplaces.

According to Queensland Health, hand washing is considered to be the most cost effective and simple method of preventing the spread of infection. However drying hands thoroughly is just as important as the washing.  No shortcuts!  Now you can get an effective, long lasting skin formulation to put on clean skin that helps form a protective barrier to germs and viruses.

Toys should be washed in warm soapy water and dried thoroughly.  They can then have an added layer of protection with BioProtect.

Clothing and fabric can also be a carrier for pathogens and germs.  Now available is a fabric conditioner containing BioProtect that is as simple as placing in the softener drawer of your washing machine.  Your clothes will have an invisible barrier to germs and pathogens and one application will last for up to 1 year.   Help stop the germs from coming in and out of your house, childcare, workplace and other settings.

Got questions? Ring our friendly Healthy Buildings staff on 0422 469 989.