The Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) is a respiratory virus that is spreading worldwide. While most COVID-19 cases are associated with travel, person-to-person spread is now being reported. The virus is spread when an infected person coughs or sneezes and tiny droplets land on people or objects. Symptoms include fever, cough and shortness of breath. In Iowa, the immediate health risk from COVID-19 is low.
Prevention of COVID-19 is the same as that for other respiratory illnesses (like flu):
Cover your coughs and sneezes with a tissue or your upper arm/elbow
Clean your hands frequently with soap and water
Contain germs by staying home when ill
Clean and disinfect surfaces in the environment
Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH) and it's public and private partners continue to prepare plans and procedures in case they should be needed. It is important for child care providers to prepare for COVID-19 in the same way they prepare for severe weather or other events that could disrupt their normal routine.
Being uncertain and anxious about COVID-19 is normal. Parents and children may worry and have questions. Your confidence and calm attitude will help to ease their worries and help children feel safe and secure. Also, be sure the information you share is from a reliable source. IDPH has timely and factual COVID-19 information available at the following websites:
IDPH COVID-19 webpage
IDPH Business & Organizations webpage includes the following Child Care resources:
COVID-19 Webinar for Childcare Homes and Centers (recorded 03/03/2020)
COVID-19 Guidance for Child Care Centers and Homes
IDPH Schools webpage includes the following resource:
Fact Sheet: Talking to Children About COVID-19
Healthy Child Care Iowa has additional resources available on their "Printed Products" webpage, scroll down to the heading: COVID-19 (Novel Coronavirus) Resources.
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