Health and Safety Training

One of your primary responsibilities is to keep the children in your care healthy and safe from injury and illness. There are health and safety policies and procedures that state licensing regulations require child care centers and most family child care homes to follow. These vary by state. It is important that you provide orientation training for all providers, substitutes and volunteers, preferably before they work with children. The training should include information about your program's health and safety policies and procedures.

Preventing, identifying and reporting child abuse and neglect

As a child care provider, you are legally required to report all suspected child abuse or neglect. You need to know how to prevent abuse, recognize the signs of abuse and how to report all suspected abuse. In some states, child abuse training is required annually. To protect yourself, your program and the children in your care, training should be conducted for all providers prior to their providing direct care to children. In center-based programs, training should also include those who come in contact with children on a regular basis, such as cooks, janitors and regular volunteers. In family child care programs, you should provide training for anyone who has responsibility for the care of children in your program at any time, such as aides, substitutes and regular volunteers.

Your local Child Care Resource and Referral agency (CCR&R) may offer training on preventing, recognizing and reporting child abuse and neglect. You can also contact your local social services agency.

Cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR)

CPR is a life-saving procedure. It is used when an infant, child or adult's heart stops beating or the person is unable to breathe. CPR involves rescue breathing (mouth-to-mouth) and chest compressions. Another skill covered in CPR training is abdominal thrusts for choking victims who have an obstructed airway (the Heimlich Maneuver). Contact your CCR&R, the American Heart Association, or the American Red Cross for information about infant and pediatric training.

First aid

First aid is used when emergency treatment is needed for an injury or illness. The injury or illness may or may not require additional medical treatment. Contact your CCR&R, the  American Heart Association, or the American Red Cross for information about infant and pediatric training.

Reducing the Risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) 

SIDS is defined as the sudden death of an infant of less than 1-year-old for which the cause is unknown. The majority of deaths occur in infants younger less than 6-months of age. All providers must be trained to always place an infant on his or her back to sleep and to keep them within sight at all times. Providers must never place a child on his/her stomach or side to sleep. Contact your local CCR&R to determine if it offers training regarding reducing the risk of SIDS or if it can direct you to other local agencies that conduct this important training.

Resources

Bloodborne infections

Bloodborne infections (also know as bloodborne pathogens) are microorganisms present in human blood that can cause disease in humans. These may include, but aren't limited to, Hepatitis B virus (HBV) and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). Some easy and important precautions you can use are frequent and thorough handwashing and use of latex gloves when coming in contact with blood. You can find more information on this topic at http://www.osha.gov/. Contact your local Child Care Resource and Referral (CCR&R) agency to find out if it offers training on bloodborne infections or if it can direct you to other local agencies that conduct this important training.

Administering medications

Training in medication administration helps you make sure there are no mistakes in giving prescribed and over-the-counter medications to children. It also helps you to recognize any potential adverse side effects so that children receive appropriate treatment. Contact your local Child Care Resource and Referral agency to find out if it offers training on administering medications or if it can direct you to other local agencies that conduct this important training.

Additional Resource

  • Find your Child Care Resource and Referral agency by entering your zip code in the red box on the right or by contacting Child Care Aware® toll-free at 800-424-2246 or visiting us at www.childcareaware.org.