COVID-19 Latest Update: Little Ones remains open as normal assisting each of the families that contact us to find childcare in a temporary or permanent capacity. COVID-19 guidance considered ʻchildcare, support and teaching staffʼ as essential workers, permitted to travel to and from work as they cannot work from home. Find our latest advice guide here Read More
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Coronavirus Childcare

With the announcement of school closures, parents everywhere are wondering what coronavirus childcare is going to be available during this time. Many families, when alternative childcare is required, call on grandparents to step in as a helping hand. However, during the Coronavirus crisis, grandparents are at risk of severe complications which is why alternative Coronavirus childcare during this time is essential. However, with the current climate, you might be feeling tentative about bringing a Nanny into your home. It is important to remember that everyone needs to be vigilant with their health and hygiene. All childcare candidates that are placed with Little Ones are required to have a valid paediatric first aid certificate. All childcare candidates that completed their paediatric first aid certificate with Little Ones will have completed a section on the importance of health and hygiene and how to encourage children to be thorough with their own health and hygiene. Ensuring everyone in your home is as thorough as they possibly can with their hygiene, especially washing their hands is currently the best way to protect your family. If you are a Nanny working within a family home, try and stay within the home as much as possible and only go out if it is essential.

If you do not currently have a Nanny for your family and you are wondering what options you have, we believe that the best childcare option for you would be either a temporary nanny or a nanny share. A temporary or emergency nanny will be able to step in and care for your children if you are unable to work from home or you require someone to look after your children while you focus on your work at home.

Now is a great time to look at different arts and crafts ideas you can try with the children in your care. Social media offers a wide variety of quick and easy projects you and the children in your care could try during this time. Arts and crafts supplies can be delivered to the home to avoid having to go out to craft shops.

Alternatively, you could try puzzles with a high number of puzzle pieces, board games or card games to keep the children entertained for hours at a time and not resort to unnecessary tablet time. You can even take the time to teach the children magic tricks using only a few items.

How do I know if I need to self-isolate with coronavirus childcare?

As it stands, the Government only recommends self-isolating if you feel as though you are showing symptoms of Covid-19. However, it is important to stay at home as much as you can during this time to help stem the spreading of the virus. Everyone with flu-like symptoms - defined as a fever of above 37.8C or a persistent cough - is being asked to stay at home for at least seven days.

Also, anyone who has travelled to an affected area, or who has been in close contact with an infected person, have already been asked to self-isolate for 14 days even if they do not have any symptoms to avoid continuing the spread of the virus. Close contact is being defined as spending 15 minutes within 2m or 6 feet of someone with the virus and a significant risk.

What is considered self-isolation? Self-isolation means cutting yourself off from the rest of the world. You need to stay at home, not go to work, school or other public places, and avoid public transport or taxis, says Public Health England.

If you live with someone it is advised to limit contact with others as much as possible. If you share a kitchen, try to use it when others are not, clean surfaces as you cook and take meals back to your room. You shouldn't share towels, toiletries or other household items with someone in isolation and they should have a separate bathroom. If that is not possible, the isolated person should use the bathroom last, cleaning it thoroughly afterwards if they are able.

Any rubbish that the isolated person has been in contact with should be double-bagged and kept. If the person tests positive, you will be told what to do with their waste.

Workers will get statutory sick pay from the first day off work, not the fourth, to help contain coronavirus, the prime minister has said. Many casual or agency workers may also be entitled to sick pay but self-employed people are not. If you are unsure whether you are eligible, speak to your employer. If you need to care for a relative or your child's school is closed and you need to look after them at short notice, your employer must give you time off, but it may be unpaid.

It is also important to remember that while people of all ages can test positive for coronavirus, older people, and people with pre-existing medical conditions (such as asthma, diabetes, heart disease, lung disease) are more likely to become severely ill with the virus and are most at risk. Children have been reported to show a remarkable resistance to the virus, so while they are not at risk, they are could be carriers of the disease and pass it along to those who are more at risk, such as grandparents. The symptoms of Covid-19 are similar to those of the common cold and the flu.

What is coronavirus?

Coronaviruses are a common type of virus. They typically cause fever and a cough, which may progress to more severe pneumonia, shortness of breath and breathing difficulties in some people. Covid-19 is a new strain of coronavirus first identified in Wuhan City, China. The current evidence is that most cases appear to be relatively mild and are similar to that of a cold or flu. Most of those who have died in Wuhan appear to have had pre-existing health conditions that have caused complications. Little is known about this new strain of the virus due to it being so new so it is not clear how it is spread, however, similar viruses tend to be spread by coughs and sneezes – so the way the infection gains entry to the body is the same as the way it exits and spreads to others.

It is also possible that the virus may be spread by touching a surface or object that has been coughed or sneezed on by someone with the virus – such as by touching a doorknob or shaking hands with someone and then touching your face. There is currently no specific cure for the new coronavirus so treatment is aimed at relieving the symptoms.

Although the Department for Health has described the virus as a "serious and imminent threat" and raised the public risk level from "low" to "moderate", the risk to individuals remains low.

It is also important to remember that while people of all ages can test positive for coronavirus, older people, and people with pre-existing medical conditions (such as asthma, diabetes, heart disease, lung disease) are more likely to become severely ill with the virus and are most at risk. While children are not considered to be at risk of severe symptoms, they can be carriers of the disease and pass it along to those who are more at risk, such as grandparents which is why it is essential to discuss the importance of prevention with them. The symptoms of Covid-19 are similar to those of the common cold and the flu. The three main symptoms of coronavirus are a cough, a high temperature and shortness of breath.

With coronavirus childcare, here are some everyday actions you can take to avoid the contraction and spread of coronavirus

Good personal hygiene is the most effective way to limit the contraction and spread of Coronavirus. Below are a few everyday precautions you and your children can adopt to best avoid the contraction and spread of the disease.

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing, before eating or having been in a public place. If you are speaking with children about the importance of washing their hands for the correct amount of time, it is suggested that by singing ‘happy birthday’ twice is a great way to ensure they are washing for the full 20 seconds.
  • If soap and water are not available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
  • Avoid touching high-touch surfaces in public areas this can include elevator buttons, door handles, handrails, handshaking with people, ticket machines. Use a tissue or your sleeve to cover your hand or finger if you must touch something.
  • Wash your hands after touching surfaces in public places.
  • Avoid touching your face, nose, eyes.
  • Clean and disinfect your home to remove bacteria, introduce a routine cleaning of frequently touched surfaces such as tables, doorknobs, light switches, handles, desks, toilets, faucets, sinks & cell phones. Ideally at least once a day.
  • Avoid crowds, especially in poorly ventilated spaces. Your risk of exposure to respiratory viruses like Coronavirus may increase in crowded, compact settings with little air circulation especially if there are people in the crowd who are sick.
  • Avoid all non-essential travel.
  • Stay home as much as possible, consider ways of getting food brought to your house through family, friends or delivery services.

If you think you might have Coronavirus or you have been in close contact with someone who has it, stay at home and avoid close contact with other people, do not go to a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital at the risk of spreading the virus and use the NHS 111 online coronavirus service to find out what to do next. The website is regularly updated and will be able to provide you with real-time information without overloading the system. The 111 coronavirus service will tell you if you need to continue to stay at home or if you need medical help. It is important that you and your family take all the necessary precautions you can to ensure the safety of your loved ones and well as preventing the spread of Coronavirus.

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