Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Sample Letter to Child Care Workers/Volunteers

by Lisa Saunders


Contact  your Department of Public Health to learn if they have materials and advice for you.

The following are some ideas for a memo:

“CMV—Another Good Reason to Wash Your Hands!”

What is CMV? 
According to the CDC, "Cytomegalovirus (pronounced sy-toe-MEG-a-low-vy-rus), or CMV, is a common virus that infects people of all ages. Over half of adults by age 40 have been infected with CMV...Most people infected with CMV show no signs or symptoms. However, CMV infection can cause serious health problems for people with weakened immune systems, as well as babies infected with the virus before they are born (congenital CMV)."

Remind your employees of your handwashing and sanitizing procedures (assuming you are following procedures by the American Academy of Pediatrics in "Situations that Require Hand Hygiene" from Caring for Our Children, or
NAEYC: National Association for the Education of Young Children), which provide strong protection against cytomegalovirus (CMV) infection. Remind them that cleaning hands or surfaces with diaper wipes does not sanitize them and they should never kiss children on the mouth or share food and utensils with them.

You could tell them something like, “As with anything, the effectiveness of the hygiene measures is impacted by how well individuals follow appropriate protocol.  Now is a good time to review the handwashing policy and monitor your own handwashing.”

Click here for sample talking points to cover.

Prevention tips include:
  • Wash hands often with soap and water for 15-20 seconds, especially after wiping runny noses, changing diapers, picking up toys, etc. If soap and water are not available, use alcohol-based hand gel.
  • Use soap and water or a disinfectant to clean hard surfaces that have been contaminated by secretions.
  • Don’t kiss young children on the lips or share food, drinks, or eating utensils with them.
  • Pregnant women working in child care facilities should minimize direct exposure to saliva…Hugging is fine and is not a risk factor, (NY Dept. of Health)
  • Staff should be advised not to allow children to put their fingers or hands in another person’s mouth. (AAP, 2011)

1."Staff Education and Policies on Cytomegalovirus (CMV)," American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) et al., Caring for Our Children

2."Situations that Require Hand Hygiene" (AAP et al., Caring for Our Children):

3. National CMV Awareness Flyer with the Connecticut Department of Public Health (DPH) logo found under the "Information for Healthcare Providers” section at:

4. Fact sheet from on CMV  includes child care providers.

5.Connecticut Department of Public Health posts on its website: CDC Recommendations for People Who Care for Infants and Children

6.National CMV Foundation features several types of CMV flyers for downloading.

7.Congenital CMV Disease Research Clinic and Registry provides resources for women of childbearing age.

8. CMV prevention brochure specifically for child care providers: Utah's brochure for childcare providers).

9.For students and families: Free CMV Teaching Tool Kit: "Once Upon a Placemat: A Table Setting Tale" by Lisa Saunders—Educational coloring book and fairytale emphasizes hand-washing and refraining from sharing cups/utensils.

10, Henry The Hand teaching supplies/programs for schools. Created newsletter campaign on CMV.

11. Congenital CMV Foundations that help women of childbearing age protect their pregnancies.

12. Connecticut CMV Law: "Update on Statewide Neonatal CMV Screening" (December 8, 2015): "New legislation that requires screening for congenital CMV infection in neonates who fail their hearing tests... In this talk we will review the background to the legislation as well as the rationale behind CMV screening and the limitations of the available literature in guiding management. The steps that should occur as part of the CMV screening process will be outlined and discussed." Meeting Materials:


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