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Contact Precautions

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WHY DOES MY CHILD HAVE THIS SIGN ON THE DOOR?

Your child has been placed in Contact Precautions (isolation). Isolation is needed to prevent the spread of your child’s illness to other patients, visitors, and staff members.

HOW DOES THIS ILLNESS SPREAD?

The illness your child has or may have is spread in 2 different ways.

  • Direct contact or skin to skin contact
  • Indirect contact or touching objects, such as IV pumps, bed rails, thermometers, and other items in your child’s room.

EXAMPLES OF SOME ILLNESSES THAT NEED CONTACT PRECAUTIONS

  • Diarrhea illnesses
  • Colds in children
  • Viral pneumonia
  • Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV)
  • Chicken pox (Airborne, also)
  • Lice and Scabies
  • Croup
  • Multi-Resistant Organisms such as:
    → MRSA - Methicillin Resistant Staph Aureus 
    → ESBL - Extended Spectrum Beta Lactamase 
    → VRE - Vanocmycin Resistant Enterococci

HOW DO WE FOLLOW CONTACT PRECAUTIONS?

  • Discourage family and friends from bringing other children to visit.
  • All visitors (except for parents/guardians) and staff members need to wear gloves when entering your child’s room. Gloves will keep everyone from getting a lot of germs on our hands. Note: This is especially important if your child has a diarrheal illness.
  • All visitors and staff members need to wear gowns if they are going to have the type of contact with your child that may involve their clothes or arms. The gowns keep their arms and clothing from getting germs on them.
  • Parents/guardians are encouraged to wear gowns if they have a lot of contact with their child-such as lying on the bed with them, holding them in their lap, etc. This will help keep the parents’/guardians’ clothes clean and decrease the spread of germs to staff members and other patients when they come in contact with them in the cafeteria, elevators, etc.
    Note: This is especially important if your child has a diarrheal illness.
  • Toys should not be shared with other patients. A staff member will clean and disinfect the toy before giving it to another patient.
  • Equipment should not be used on other patients until has been cleaned with disinfectant.
  • Your child’s door may remain open since the germs are not spread through the air.

WHAT ELSE MAY WE DO TO HELP KEEP THIS ILLNESS FROM SPREADING?

Hand hygiene or using an alcohol hand sanitizer (preferably) is one of the best ways to stop infections from spreading. Everyone, including parents, should perform hand hygiene before entering and after leaving the child’s room. Soap and water is always an acceptable form of hand hygiene if there is a reason you are unable to use an alcohol based hand rub.

PLAYROOM

Since your child has an illness that can easily spread to others, your child needs to stay in the room until the illness does not have a chance of spreading to others. Even though your child must stay in the room, arrangements can be made to provide certain toys and books for your child to use.

HOW LONG DOES MY CHILD HAVE TO STAY IN CONTACT PRECAUTIONS?

The time your child stays in isolation depends on what type of illness your child has. Most illnesses only need the precautions until the illness is gone. For children with certain illnesses, the precautions may be needed for a long period. Please feel free to ask your doctor or nurse about this.


Disclaimer: This information is not intended to substitute or replace the professional medical advice you receive from your child's physician. The content provided on this page is for informational purposes only, and was not designed to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease. Please consult your child's physician with any questions or concerns you may have regarding a medical condition.

Reviewed: 11/2018

(757) 668-7000