Preventing germ spread at the doctor’s office

  • Posted on Jan 17, 2018

Pediatricians are notorious germaphobes. When I sat down for lunch with a pediatrician whom I hadn’t seen for years, we greeted each other by simultaneously offering each other hand sanitizer. The last thing we pediatricians want is for your child to pick up a new germ in our office. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) updated guidelines on how to prevent spread of germs in doctors’ offices. Here are some of the highlights about waiting rooms:

On our end:
-Waiting rooms should be equipped with hand sanitizer.
– We will remind you and your kids to cover your child’s nose and mouth with elbows rather than hands when coughing and sneezing and to dispose of tissues in the trash can promptly.
-All office staff members should receive the flu vaccine every year and be up to date with all vaccines.

On your end:
Try to BYOT (Bring Your Own Toys). Our staff cannot possibly clean all toys after each use. Also impractical is to have any plush, difficult-to-clean toys for kids in waiting rooms. It is much less germy for kids to play with their own toys and read their own books brought from home while in the waiting room.

These recommendations can easily apply to ANYWHERE you have to wait with your children- the car inspection wait room, the bank, a restaurant, and the gym. The policy states: “Infected children who are symptomatic should be segregated from well children as quickly as possible.” Which is why we have 2 Separate waiting areas at Kid’s First!

Sarah Caudle, PA-C

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