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What You Should Know

Tallahassee Daycare Accidents

Daycare Use In Tallahassee And America

Daycare use is a common and necessary part of life for many Tallahassee-area parents. In 2011, over 32.5 million American children were in a regular child care arrangement while their parents worked or pursued other activities outside of the home. This included 12.5 million preschool children (age 0-4 years) and 20.2 million school-age children (age 5-14 years).

The demand for child care has been increasing over the years due to an increase in the number of working mothers, as well the desire of many parents to provide their young children with early educational opportunities. About 88 percent of preschoolers with working moms are enrolled in daycare or other child care arrangements. For preschoolers with non-employed moms, this number drops to 28 percent. On average, children who attend daycare do so between 21-36 hours per week.

Daycare And Child Care Injuries

Because of the number of hours the average child spends in daycare or childcare, parents are often naturally concerned about their child’s safety, particularly when the child care is offered outside of the parents’ home or by non-relative caretakers.

Parents’ concerns over daycare safety are well-founded, since thousands of children are injured in childcare settings each year. Sometimes the injury is a minor one, which can be treated with a bandage and some antibiotic cream. Too often, however, the child requires medical treatment at an urgent care or hospital or results in an unnecessary fatality.

Child care injuries typically fall into two categories: child factors and environmental factors. Child factors include:

  • falls;
  • collisions with other children or objects;
  • being pushed or hit; and
  • bites.

Environmental factors include

  • wet or slippery floors, equipment, or furniture;
  • objects on the floor;
  • sharp objects; and
  • windows or doors.

When daycare accidents occur, one study has found that 56 percent of injuries were due to child factors and 42.9 percent were due to a combination of child and environmental factors, with only 1.5 percent of injuries being caused purely by environmental factors. The study’s results suggest that, while safety equipment and design are helpful in reducing injuries in child care settings, appropriate supervision of children’s behavior is critical to keeping children safe in a child care or daycare setting.

According to child health experts, the following are ten of the biggest safety concerns when it comes to group child care:

  1. Lack of adequate supervision – children should be within the care giver’s sight at all times and young children should be supervised at all times.
  2. Staff is under-trained – all staff should be trained in pediatric CPR and first-aid
  3. Medication administered improperly – poisoning can occur if medications are improperly or carelessly given. The daycare center should require written parental authorization and instruction for the administration of any medicine, staff should be properly trained in the storage and handling of medicines, and precautions should be taken to ensure that correct dosages are given and that there is an emergency plan for dealing with allergic reactions.
  4. Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) – the daycare should practice safe sleeping practices and policies for all children, including avoiding soft bedding and only putting babies to sleep on their backs.
  5. Presence of poisons or toxic substances – child care providers should properly store and lock up medicines, cleaning products, and other hazardous substances.
  6. Unsafe or recalled nursery products, equipment, and toys – items that will be used on or by children should be kept clean and in good condition. Items should not be used if they have been identified as unsafe by the Consumer Products Safety Commission.
  7. Illness transmission – child care providers should have proper cleaning, sanitizing, and disinfecting policies and practices, including hand washing and diaper changing policies. They also should have policies to ensure that staff and children are current on immunizations
  8. Lack of food safety – daycare providers need to ensure the proper handling and storage of breast milk, formula, other beverages, and food, as well as ensure that food that is served is the proper temperature and size to prevent burns or choking.
  9. Failure to prepare for an emergency – child care providers need to have emergency plans that cover various contingencies from fires to natural disasters. They also need to plan for kidnapping, lost child, and active shooter situations, as well as other man-made disaster possibilities appropriate to the center’s geographic location.
  10. Lack of licensing and background checks – Florida law requires that anyone who provides child care in their home for more than one unrelated family member must be either registered or licensed through the Department of Children and Families. Background checks should also be conducted by the center with parents seeking verification that these checks have been performed.

Legal Help For Tallahassee Daycare Or Child Care Injuries

If your child has been injured in a daycare or child care accident or has suffered neglect or abuse, the child injury lawyers at Fasig & Brooks can help. Contact us for a free case evaluation and for assistance on how to proceed to protect your child from further injury and to get the justice you deserve. Call us today at (850) 583-9409 or use our online contact form.