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Don wrote: “Some daycares remained open throughout the pandemic to serve the needs [of] children of essential service providers. Have there been any instances to date of transmission of the virus in those situations?”
“There have been no COVID outbreaks associated with daycares in B.C.,” Ministry of Health spokesperson Paula Smith said in an email June 5.
Most B.C. child-care centres closed during the pandemic, with some remaining open to serve the children of frontline workers.
Many daycares began reopening in mid-May as the province entered the second phase of its plan to restart the economy.
Provincial guidelines require daycares to implement new protocols to prevent the spread of COVID-19, including daily screening of staff and kids for symptoms, increased cleaning and strict rules against anyone experiencing being allowed to enter their premises.
The reopening of daycares “will mean that many of those children will get infected,” according to Dr. Anna Banerji, a professor of pediatrics and public health at the University of Toronto.
“While most children will have no symptoms or minor symptoms, children with underlying conditions are at risk for more severe disease,” she said. “As well, if there are people who are vulnerable at home, such as someone with cancer or other underlying conditions, and elderly grandparents who could get severe disease if exposed.”
Banerji advises families with members vulnerable to COVID-19 – such as kids, parents or grandparents with underlying health issues – to keep kids away from playing with others for now.
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