A report co-authored by YSN Associate Professor Angela Crowley, PhD, APRN, PNP-BC, FAAN, has led to $1.3 million in state stimulus funding to strengthen safety measures in daycares. The funding addresses playground hazards and how medications are administered to children.
Crowley appeared in a story on Connecticut Public Radio regarding a report co-authored by Crowley and Dr. Marjorie S. Rosenthal, a researcher with Yale School of Medicine, and published by the Child Health and Development Institute.
The 2009 study analyzed 1,400 reports of unannounced inspections of licensed daycare facilities by the Department of Public Health (DPH). Connecticut has more than 4,300 hundred licensed daycare facilities from large centers to small home daycares.
Crowley found that improvements should be made to the way medicines are administered to children in daycare. "Many centers were giving medicines but not all centers had providers that were trained and not all medicines were always labeled or locked and out of children's reach," Crowley explained. "We also found that only twenty percent of family childcare providers were trained to give medicines."
The report recommended the state update its medication administration training program for childcare providers including making it affordable and accessible. As a result, the state Department of Social Services (DSS) has allocated $200,000 of stimulus money to develop just such a training program as well as a course for nurse consultants.
Another widespread problem identified in the report was that 48 percent of daycares had hazardous playgrounds. In response, DSS has allocated another $775,000 of stimulus money to hire inspectors and provide grants for safety enhancements.
Federal funding also will help the DPH to create an online database making safety information accessible to the public. Guidelines for choosing a provider are listed at www.ct.gov/dph/daycare.
Reprinted from a story by WNPR's Lucy Nalpathanchil. Read or listen online here.