Guidance on Managing COVID-19 and Other Seasonal Viruses for Early Care and Education Settings and Families of Children Under 5 Years Old

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Throughout the pandemic, guidance for mitigating COVID-19 risk in children has prioritized those in K-12 educational settings. However, little guidance has been developed for children under 5 years of age who receive early childhood education or child care in group settings. Centers that provide care and/or education for young children have unique challenges in reducing the risk of COVID-19 transmission, specifically because children under 5 years of age are still unable to get vaccinated. These challenges also include issues with reliable masking among this age group, worsened preexisting financial and staffing shortfalls throughout the pandemic, and more. 

Therefore, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) and PolicyLab at CHOP developed this guidance to complement recommendations the institution released for students in K-12 educational settings. These new recommendations seek to support early care and education settings and the families who rely on them with practical mitigation measures that reflect the current state of the pandemic. 

Authors:

Rubin D, Coffin S, Fisher B, Gerber J, Matone M, Gerdes M