Daycare question: WWYD? (OT, XP) Update post #11

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Princess Leia's picture
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Daycare question: WWYD? (OT, XP) Update post #11

Let me start by saying that I love my daycare. They are reasonably priced, good people, love my girls... 95% of the time they are super.

My one concern is this: they always jump the gun and think my kids are sick. I understand that there are regulations that they have to follow, but they have sent one of my girls home on average of once every other week. Most of the time, they call and say that they woke up from a nap with a fever. Many times, I get there and the fever is gone and the girls are fine. The thing is, they aren't allowed to come back to daycare for 24 hours after they are fever free. Several times I have taken them to the doctor, been given the "mystery fever maybe viral" diagnosis and had to keep them home the next day. There have been a few times where there was something really wrong, but more often, it's nothing, and DH or I have to use a sick day to stay home with a well kid. I now have 1 and 1/2 days left until they start docking my pay at work. My thinking is... if they wake up from a nap (where they are laying in the sun sometimes and usually under a blanket) and have a fever, take it again 30 minutes later before you call me to come get them.

Anyway, on Friday they said that Dylan had a fever of around 101 (I don't remember exactly) when she woke up from a nap at 5:30. DH and I got there at 5:45 to pick her up. She felt a little warm, but not feverish and was perfectly fine by the time we got home. When they said that, DH made a comment about her still being on antibiotics for her double EI. The worker said they had a boy go home with strep in her room earlier this week. DH said "The doctor said it covers her strep, too." DH mis-spoke. Scout also had an antibiotic prescription from last week because of one of the "mystery fevers". The doc did a strep and flu test on her - both were negative. He checked her ears and they were fine. He prescribed an antibiotic bc it was the Friday before a long weekend and it was possible that she had strep or an EI that just wasn't showing up yet. He got his kids mixed up. Lol

So, we leave daycare, go to Burger King where we eat and play, and come home about an hour later. I had left my cell phone at home accidentally. I got a message from a nurse at the after hours clinic where we took Dylan 2 weeks ago. I called back and she explained that the daycare director had called her asking about their policies on giving "return to school" notes because of Dylan's note. The nurse explained that she didn't feel comfortable, nor was it legal for her to discuss medical history or records with anyone who wasn't a parent or guardian but explained that if a child is given a diagnosis of EI, they are not contagious, and so a note might be issued. If a child is even suspected of having strep, they would not be issued a note to return the next day. The nurse called me because she said she was uncomfortable with the call and just wanted to let me know that it had happened. She said the director was really directing the questions to their policies, but implied that we may have pushed the doc to write one or changed/ forged it.

Now let me say, that Dylan's fever came at a very inconvenient time. It was finals week for both me and DH, but before we got the diagnosis, I had already called my sister and she agreed to ditch work the next day to come watch D if we needed her to. I felt horrible sending D back that day because she was obviously still sick, but she wasn't contagious and we couldn't afford to miss, so I sent her anyway (with the note). I called to check on her multiple times during the day, and even picked her up 3 or 4 hours early because my finals schedule allowed me to. I can see why they might be slightly suspicious. It really irks me, though, that they would think that we would jeopardize the health of our child or the others there in that way by forging a note or persuading a doctor to write one somehow.

So now I guess my WWYD is two parts. First, would you say or do anything about this call to the clinic or just let it go? If you would say/ do something, how would you do it tactfully and respectfully? This is not something I want to leave the daycare over or anything, it just kind of bothers me some. Second, do I say something about them always taking the girls' temp right after they wake up? Just today, Dylan woke up from a nap and felt warm, but 10 minutes later (after I changed her diaper and got her a snack) she felt normal. I never took her temp, so I don't know if she had one or not.

Comments? Suggestions?

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I would definitely ask the center when they take temps. I think it's a bit weird that they temp right after naps because all kids are a bit warm from their sleep. I would also ask why the director took it upon herself to call your doctor to discuss your child's medical history without asking for permission. Did she forget about HIPPA? No wonder the nurse was agitated. I used to work with child care providers for our county until 11/09. I do know that a center in our town loves to send kids home sick so they can double fill the spot the next day since the "sick" child is not able to return the following day. That way they get double paid for the same spot. Legal? No. Done? Yes.

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I would definitely tell them to wait awhile after the kids wake up before taking temperatures. Kids are always warm when they wake up!

That's just weird that the director would call expecting to get personal information. I don't think I would say anything unless she brings it up tomorrow.

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We run a smaller facility frmo our home but the rules should be about the same so here's my take on it....I think they really need to re-think what they expect parents to pick up for. I mean, yes, we always tell the parents if their child seems unwell...but more because they ask to know right away and are in a position to take time off if need be. but if they just seem a little run down and warm we would let them know and just keep the child on the couch with a drink and a cuddle...if the parents pick up then that's great and if they can't then that's fine too. There are supposed to be rest areas in daycares of any size where a child can go if they aren't feeling up to par. We don't ASK they be picked up unless it seems something that is clearly contagious...or the child is just miserable and upset and you can tell the illness is taking a real toll on them.
And taking a temperature straight after nap is rediculous. I wake up warm every day...doesn't everyone? lol. Really...I mean, if we did that at our daycare, every child would go home every single day... they should know better. If a child feels ESPECIALLY warm is different but we would wake them up, let them come round, then take a temperature. Why are the kids laying in the sun though?? That can't be good for them to nap in the sun...
also, what we do here is if it's hot and the still want their blanket we sort of bunch it up for them to snuggle up against, not lay under.

I would personally say something about them calling the nurse but that's just me. i know you are worried it might put you in an awkward position. I am just all about people being held responsible for their actions. Wink

I hope you get things sorted soon. Daycare staff/parent relationships can be very tricky!

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Karen, I was hoping you would answer to get an opinion from the "other side" of things. I know our state regulations say that if there is a fever over 100.4 the child should go home and not return until s/he is fever free for 24 hours. :roll:

I really think I am going to say something about the temperature thing. Maybe not tomorrow, but next time they call and say one of them woke up with a fever I will ask them to take it again in half an hour and call me back.

As far as naps go, they aren't always in the sun... it depends on what time of day it is and if they have the curtains pulled. In Scout's room, they lay mats on the floor and everyone naps at the same time, so the curtains are always closed at nap time. In Dylan's room, each child has their own crib so they can nap any time they get sleepy. I never put blankets over them at home when they sleep, but every time I've come in when D is sleeping, she has one on her. I really believe she's just hot most of the time - not feverish.

captainswife's picture
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I agree with sending home if they are warm enough to make you worried but I think your daycare is taking advantage of it by taking temps after naps. I asked Wayne about it too and he goes "if we did that, Ryan would never be allowed back" (he's always warm too lol)...he said it sounds a little fishy. Do you know I can't remember the last time we had to send someone home?? I think it was in summer! I mean, they don't get sick a lot either but still...it just seems like they are taking advantage of a rule in place to either fill that spot or lessen their workload. :s

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ugh, that sucks. kids wake up from naps warm, they just do. I think your daycare is jumping the gun. if the child wasn't hot BEFORE the nap, then why take the temp right after? I think that by itself is very strange.

Asking them to wait 30 minutes after a nap before taking a temp is fair ... but they should only be taking the temp if they truly suspect the child is sick. And what kind of thermometer are they using? Curious ...

Princess Leia's picture
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Gwen- not sure what brand, but I know they use a digi one and take the temp under the arm. Not the most acurate, but the least invasive for girls as little as mine. It's how I do it at home too. I have two of those ear thermometers, but they don't fit in my girls tiny ears!

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1 - I agree that taking the temp right after a nap just seems dumb. They should wait for at least 30 minutes after they get up to check. If they are still warm then they can take their temp. But if they are getting a temp at least once a week, the daycare should rethink when they check temps.

2 - I would be upset that they called my docs office without your permission. I would definitely say something about this. With the laws the way they are, they can not get any information.

Sorry you have to deal with this.

Princess Leia's picture
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So, I didn't say anything this morning... was in a rush - it was quite a Monday.

Princess Leia's picture
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Update:
Yesterday afternoon I talked to the director and kind of played dumb. I told her that the nurse from the clinic had called and told me that she had called to ask them about our note and I wasn't clear what the phone call was about and why she didn't call me. She said that after DH's (incorrect) comment about Dylan having strep, she double checked the doc note that she kept on file because she thought she remembered it being an EI. The doctor's note didn't say what the diagnosis was and only said that she was under their care in 1/11. They hadn't even checked the box on when she was clear to come back to school. Well, I didn't even really look at the note. I asked them for one that said she was clear to return on 1/12. I thought they had. The director said that she trusted me (she's kept my girls for 1 1/2 years, never had a problem with us, blah blah blah) but that she could get in trouble with the state if they checked the records - and in fact she had been in trouble with them before in a similar situation. She said she didn't call asking about Dylan's medical history, she called asking what their procedures were on return to school notes to be sure it was in line with what the state requires from her. She said the nurse started to tell her about the EI, but then got defensive and said she couldn't tell her anything.
I wasn't part of the conversation, so I don't know exactly what was said, but at least she knows that I know and that I'm not going to let that kind of thing just slide.
She (the director) even called me later last night to let me know that she had called the clinic again and asked to speak with their office manager because her questions were never answered by the nurse about their policies. She said she was waiting for a call back but wanted me to know in case they called me about it. They haven't.

As far as the fever goes, I think I am just going to wait until next time it happens and ask them to wait and check again in half an hour. I will explain that my kids wake up hot and before DH or I leave work, we'd like them to give us half an hour to see if the temps go down.

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I asked about the thermometers because we sometimes get inaccurate readings with the ear ones. Wink

I'm glad you let her know you know ... good luck with everything!

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I think you handled that quite well. Hope that incidents in the future go better too.

"coolmama72" wrote:

I asked about the thermometers because we sometimes get inaccurate readings with the ear ones. Wink

Our doctor's office gets innacurate results with their expensive one that tests around forhead and behind ear too. If Andrea has been cuddling with us when sick her skin temp goes up and thus it reads wrong. It is so hard to get an accurate tempurature some days.

I find that when reading under the arm, it is about a degree lower than actual, but that is just in my experience. I'm happy that Andrea is finally allowing me to go under her tongue.

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I think you handled it well, but I'd be wondering why they are taking temperatures so often? Not that they shouldn't if they suspect the kid is sick, but taking temps every day? That's extreme!

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exactly. every day when they wake up is plain weird. lol. They need to utilize their time a little better Wink

I'm happy you got it out in the open. It makes things a little easier to deal with. And I think it's good you are waiting on the temp thing until it pops up again. That way it might hit home more rather than them just writing a note in a book and forgetting about it when the time comes.