15 Reasons Why Child Care Providers (and all women of childbearing age) Should Be Informed About Congenital CMV
by Lisa Saunders
1.Congenital CMV is the #1 Birth Defects Virus (Carlson et al., 2010). "More children will have disabilities due to congenital CMV than other well-known infections and syndromes, including Down Syndrome, Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, Spina Bifida, and Pediatric HIV/AIDS" (NationalCMV.org).
2.1% of live born infants are infected prenatally with CMV (American Academy of Pediatrics et al., Caring for Our Children, 2011).
3.“Women who are exposed to CMV prior to conception or within the first trimester of pregnancy and seroconvert have increased risk of their infant being infected with CMV.”(Thackeray et al., 2016).
4. CMV is an “occupational risk" for daycare educators (Joseph, et al., 2006).
5.General public: 1-4% is the estimated “annual rate of a pregnant woman who is CMV antibody negative catching CMV for the first time in pregnancy” Demmler-Harrison, MD, CMV In Pregnancy: What Should I Know?, 2014).
6.Caregivers/teachers: 8- 20% of them contract CMV infection every year (AAP et al.. 2011).
7.44% to 100% of two-year-olds in group daycare are excreting CMV (Pass et al., 1986).
8.Only 18.5% of licensed “in-home” daycare providers have heard of CMV according to “Child Care Provider Awareness and Prevention of Cytomegalovirus and Other Infectious Diseases” (Thackeray et al., 2016).
9.Caregivers/teachers should be told about CMV because of increased probability of exposure (AAP et al.. 2011). Also, NAEYC: National Association for the Education of Young Children with its "Early Childhood Program Standards and Accreditation Criteria & Guidance for Assessment (10.D.01, p.91)" includes: "a. steps to reduce occupational hazards such as infectious diseases (e.g., exposure of pregnant staff to CMV [cytomegalovirus], chicken pox)..."
10.It is a worker's right to know occupational hazards according to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). There are over one million (1,260,600) childcare worker jobs in the US (Department of Labor (2014).
11.“Providers do not know how to appropriately sanitize surfaces to reduce spread of disease.” Many providers use diapers wipes to clean a surface. Diaper wipes do not sanitize (Thackeray et al., 2016).
12.“Increasing risk perception is important because providers may not be concerned about taking measures to reduce the probability of infection if they feel that they are at low risk” (Thackeray et al., 2016).
13.Mothers of children in daycare are also at increased risk for CMV (Pass et al., 1986). “61 % of children under the age of 5 are cared for in a child care facility...Intervening with child care providers and parents through child care facilities are key opportunities to reduce prevalence of CMV infection and other diseases.” (Thackeray et al., 2016).
14.$1.86 billion annually, with a cost per child of more than $300,000, is the estimated cost of congenital CMV to the US health care system (Modlin, Arvin, et al., 2004).
15.The CDC "suggests that pregnant women reduce their risk of CMV acquisition during pregnancy using simple hygienic precautions but this suggestion is not often followed...the efficacy of hygienic precautions has been >75%.” (Adler, 2015).