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Childminding ill children

(30 Posts)
Sadbri Wed 08-Nov-17 14:52:33

I’m looking into opening up a childminding business but a little different. I realised that when a child is ill parents will normally have to have a day off. What I was looking was giving parents the option to drop their ill children off to my house for me to care for them. Also cover emergency childcare too within my own home at the same time but making parents aware of other illnesses in the house. However as it’s ad hoc and I’ll only be caring for them when they are ill.
A. As it’s ad hoc and not regular do I still count as a childminder. I can’t find this out online.
B. With regards to the different illnesses would I have to set up precautions for health and safety.
C. Has anyone else done this?

If you can help at all so I know where I stand and if this type of childcare is an option. Thank sadie

2014newme Wed 08-Nov-17 14:58:00

Do you have any medical training if you're setting up a service minding sick kids?
How will you manage the risk of you catching the illnesses or cross contamination e.g child you're caring for who has diarrhoea passes the bug to a child you're caring for who has flu? Or your kids catch these bugs?
Yes you need to be ofsted registered
How will you manage financially if you have times when you have no sick kids to mind

The biggest issue I can see is that you're cons sick yourself from exposure to sick kids. Obviously medical staff in hospital have the same risk bit not all. Hospital patients have infectious illnesses and they have the training and systems to control infection.

Lolalovespugs Wed 08-Nov-17 15:07:16

Ofsted would not be happy about you putting children at risk of illness. They are very hot on this and will take a dim view of the cross infection risks.

You will need to be Ofsted registered to work from home.

In your shoes I would set up as an ad hoc self employed nanny to care for the children in their own home. Someone where I live does this and keeps quite busy dividing her time between childcare emergencies and ad hoc care.

Kentnurse2015 Wed 08-Nov-17 15:11:22

It would be very tricky to set up yourself I think with the issues of contamination. Going to other people's homes would be a better idea.

Personally, if one of my children is unwell then I prefer myself or my husband to be with them as they only want their mum or dad anyway but I get this isn't ideal for all. I think I'm lucky that my children don't get sick generally. If I needed a lot of time off work then a service like yours could be invaluable.

Maybe it's quite a good plan actually!

Sadbri Wed 08-Nov-17 16:09:01

I’ve worked in a nursery for 4 years and got my first aid training that’s about all the medical training I have.
I considered giving the children their own rooms in my house as I have 2 spare rooms. Therefore would minimise children passing an illness on.
I wasn’t too sure how OFSTED would take this as I know they may frown upon it.
I was going to give it a trial once my baby is 9 months old as I’m still thinking long term doing this when she’s about 2. Personally having worked in a nursery I’ve managed to hold up a rather good immune system only getting ill once a year if that.
Depending on how busy I get will depend if I do this from home but will defiantly start going to parents homes first as a trial.

Wolfiefan Wed 08-Nov-17 16:10:37

So you will have a child at home and be bringing in sick kids?
Children having their own rooms? So what you shut each child in their own room like a form of quarantine?
I don't think you've thought this through.

SkafaceClaw Wed 08-Nov-17 16:15:49

Wouldn’t it be distressing for the poorly children too?

When my dc are poorly they want the people they are closest to around not someone new... In fact I as an adult wouldn’t like the idea of hanging out with someone I don’t know well when I’m not well.

Maybe it would work for children with rashes that have no other symptoms?

2014newme Wed 08-Nov-17 16:20:49

Perhaps the reason you did not get sick when working in a nursery is because the sick kids were off.
Your 9 month baby won't have the same immunity to bugs. How will you look after poorly kids and a baby at same time?

Kentnurse2015 Wed 08-Nov-17 16:21:50

I really don't think it would work with bringing sick children into your home. Especially if you have your own child.

Going to see others maybe. Perhaps more at the end of an illness where they are still recovering but don't need their mumpr dad so much

DonkeyOaty Wed 08-Nov-17 16:27:28

Parents homes is a great idea.

Your own, in individual rooms, not so much. What if they were sick in their sleep? How would you monitor and prioritise? Infection control, deep cleaning, not sure about insurance. Ofsted def wouldn't like.

2014newme Wed 08-Nov-17 18:01:14

Why do you not become a normal childminder?

HSMMaCM Wed 08-Nov-17 19:06:56

If a child had chickenpox (for example) they might be feeling fine and not want to be stuck in their room. Same for a child on 48 hours for D&V - they might feel fine on their last day off and want to play.

Going to their home would work much better, but I'd be worried about your own child and what you would expose them to.

Love51 Wed 08-Nov-17 19:12:56

I'd send my sick kids to my usual childminders (except for the small matter they wouldn't accept them).I wouldn't send them to a strangers. Why not just become a school holidays childminder if you don't want to work all year?

Kentnurse2015 Wed 08-Nov-17 19:58:12

I work with sick children and my children are probably exposed to so much. That isn't the issue really but lack of isolation in your own home will be

tellmehowtoget Wed 08-Nov-17 20:14:06

Ofsted are very hot on excluding sick children and isolating them until collected by a parent/career. I cannot imagine any child would be happy with being isolated in a room all day, and by shutting them in a room you are not meeting the eyfs requirements so again ofsted would not be happy.
Advertising as a nanny would be preferable.
Also costs of registering as a childminder aren't cheap -
Yearly insurance and ofsted registration is £100ish, paediatric first aid £100 so that's £200 you need to recoup before making anything. That's 5 days a year of looking after a sick child to break even. I think you'll struggle, as most sick children prefer to be in familiar environments with familiar carers.

Aliveinwanderland Wed 08-Nov-17 20:16:03

If DS was poorly I wouldn’t even consider leaving him with a stranger who didn’t know him. Not only would this be distressing for my child, it would also be very difficult to care for him or spot potential symptoms as you wouldn’t know what was normal for him.

pitterpatterrain Wed 08-Nov-17 20:21:46

What ages are you thinking about?

My mind first went to emergency nanny as the best option - CM for sick kids, not sure I would consider it tbh - when our DC are sick we try our best to juggle things, and if we still need to partially work we work around each other from home (both parents home with ill DC) or have someone to in to cover the key times (whether family or emergency nanny)

I find my DC don't want to be out of their home environment / too far away when sick, even with their regular CM they can get sad and make it clear they want to be home

user1491295468 Wed 08-Nov-17 23:20:46

This just can’t work.

The children are unlikely to be happy being sent somewhere unfamiliar, especially when ill. Much less so given that they will be quarantined for much of the time in a bedroom alone.

You cannot possibly prevent the spread of anything infectious because you will be moving between rooms yourself, and you and your child will therefore possibly carry those infectious conditions not only between the children present but from previous minded children to future children. Many conditions are airborne, or require rooms/bedding/toys to be sterilised which is hugely time consuming, some can pass through the food chain and could pose problems for environmental health if you propose proving any food/drink from a kitchen where there are sick children.

Ofsted won’t like it as you’ve a duty to prevent the spread of infection, so your registration would be short lived - at the very least you’re likely to be handed a poor grading which would put most parents off, and repeated poor gradings/flaunting rules = removal of registration which could affect your ability to work with children in the future.

Your public liability insurer will only cover you if you are following the requirements laid down by the statutory framework - which you won’t be. Pli cover is a requirement of ofsted registration. I doubt that realistically priced insurance exists for a medically unqualified childcare wanting to specialise in looking after children who are too sick or infectious to attend normal childcare settings.

It’s tough to gauge just how sick a child actually is. At what point would you refuse care yourself? When a child’s temperature reaches a certain level? When they are crying or distressed? How do you gauge when the child needs qualified medical care, and balance the needs of the parent and your business with the child’s?

Realistically, it’s not a huge money spinner either; in my setting children tend to miss, on average, 2/3 days per year due to sickness if attending full time, and probably only a small proportion of parents are so unable to cover sickness that they would consider using this sort of service - most would either juggle cover themselves, use family or use a babysitting/nanny service of some sort so that the child can remain at home in comfort.

Most importantly, what you’re proposing isn’t even remotely in the best interests of the child.

jannier Thu 09-Nov-17 08:12:38

Sorry but if you have worked in a nursery for 4 years why don't you know how Ofsted would feel about this? Its very clear in the EYFS standards about welfare in terms of spread of disease. You should also know about meeting the needs of all the children rights to play and socialise etc. and all you experience should make it obvious that no sick child lays in bed all day or is happy to be handed over to a stranger on a normal day let alone when feeling ill.

Tanith Thu 09-Nov-17 23:42:30

I’ve seen this idea suggested several times before but never heard of it actually being put into practice because, once someone has had a chance to look into it, they realise it’s not viable.

As has been said before, your primary concern should the wellbeing of the children and this idea doesn’t consider their needs and welfare at all.

I once signed up as an emergency childminder to take on children whose usual childcarer was unable to take them. I received no work from this at all for the simple reason that parents will not send their children to a complete stranger, no matter how well qualified or experienced they may be.
It’s a really hard decision to leave your child with someone else and parents usually take a lot of time and trouble choosing the right childcarer and getting their child settled.

They almost certainly won’t entertain the idea of dumping a sick child with someone they have never met before.

I can’t see your idea working for that reason alone - and that’s before we get on to what Ofsted would think of it (they won’t like it).

Ohdearducks Thu 09-Nov-17 23:48:20

The EYFS statutory framework specifically says that any one working in Early Years has a duty of care to prevent the spread of infection.
This can’t work OP.

Enwi Fri 10-Nov-17 14:28:48

I think if my child was ill the absolute last place I would want them to be is with a childminder that isn't even their normal childminder. Most children coming to you won't even know you and assuming children are only unwell enough to attend settings a couple of times a year, they won't really get to know you either. A poorly and sick child would most likely be inconsolable being dumped with a total stranger.
Also, OFSTED would not be happy about you looking after more than one child at a time who is sick due to the risk of them both getting eachothers illness.
Then there is the fact that you will more than likely catch illnesses yourself.
I think their will be a very, very small market for this and considering the average child is too ill to attend childcare a couple of times a year for 2-3 days at a time, you would really struggle to make any profit.
Also the amount of paperwork you would have to do for each child in order for them to only attend for say, one day, would be a huge waste of your time.
Not to mention the damage to your property of having permanently snotty, unwell kids throwing up everywhere and having diarrhoea.
Then there is the huge risk of illnesses progressing whilst children are with you.
Sorry, I just really don't think it would work!

PoisonousSmurf Sat 11-Nov-17 15:31:34

OMG! Are you for real woman? Are you an alien? Don't you realize that you will be ill yourself?
The reason it's not been done before is because it WON'T WORK!
And people like you can be isolated by all the other CMs because you are setting a precedent of having sick children!

PoisonousSmurf Sat 11-Nov-17 15:35:25

BUT, the only way it could work is if you went to THEIR house. At least then you could market yourself as a cleaner who happens to care for sick children...

BatteredBreadedOrSouthernFried Sat 11-Nov-17 15:37:50

This could never work.

You couldn’t have more than one child at a time, you couldn’t have your own child there either. Because sick children require nursing. You are jut a doctor, how are you to know whether a child just has a bug or whether something far more serious is wrong? What if you suddenly need to get them to A&E? What if it’s Noro? Can you bring a child with Noro to A&E? What if you call the parents to come and collect and they say “we no! You said you care for sick children, I can’t leave work” or what if they come to collect and refuse to pay you as you failed to provide the care you said you would.

It’s a ridiculous idea unless you are doing it onegrinne in the parents’ home. Which is a nanny.

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