Local childcare/daycare providers should review all information on this page for guidance on how to handle COVID-19 cases, outbreaks, and exposures.

Review the latest CDC Quarantine and Isolation Guidance for more information.

 
Separate pages are available for schools, businesses, and healthcare facilities.

POSITIVE TEST RESULT

Anyone who tests positive for COVID-19 must self-isolate. Parents/guardians should report a positive test result, including an at-home test, for a child who attends childcare to the facility so that contact tracing can take place. Employees of a childcare facility should also report a positive test to management.

Length of Isolation Period:

  • Those who test positive for COVID-19 must self-isolate at home for at least 5 days.
    • The date of symptom onset (or the test date, if asymptomatic) is considered Day 0.
    • Day 1 is the first full day after symptoms begin (or the first full day after the test date, if asymptomatic).
  • Isolation may end after Day 5 (returning to care/other activities on Day 6) if the individual is:
    • Fever-free for at least 24 hours without the use of medications, and
    • Symptoms are improving. Note that some mild symptoms may persist beyond this time period.
  • Returning to daily activities on Day 6 following a positive test is also dependent upon the individual wearing a well-fitting mask at all times while in public. As this is difficult to achieve for children in a childcare facility, management may decide to implement a policy requiring an individual be excluded for 10 full days following a positive test. Facilities may set policies that specify longer (but not shorter) isolation periods. Families and employees should follow their facility’s policies and procedures for returning following a positive COVID-19 test.
  • See the latest guidance for more details:

 

When a Positive Test Result is Received:

  • Request proof of the test result and gather relevant information about the individual who tested positive, including when their symptoms began (or if they are asymptomatic), when they were last in the facility, and individuals with whom they may have recently been in contact.
  • Review the individual’s activities during their infectious period, the two days prior to symptom onset (or if asymptomatic, the two days prior to the test collection).
  • Determine if any individuals in the facility meet the definition of a close contact:
    • Spending a cumulative 15 minutes or more in a 24-hour period within 6 feet of the infected person during their infectious period, or
    • Having direct contact with the infected person during their infectious period.
  • Notify all close contacts of their exposure. In a childcare facility, this may be a large number of children and staff due to the type of care and activities taking place.
  • Following the latest CDC Quarantine and Isolation Guidance, exclude those who are not up-to-date on their COVID-19 vaccinations. See Close Contacts below for more information.

 

At-Home Tests:

  • You can and should exclude children and staff based on a positive at-home test result.
  • Negative at-home test results should not be used to allow an individual to return (either from isolation or quarantine).
  • Individuals are not exempt from isolation after a repeat positive result (within 90 days of a previous positive) if their initial positive test was only an at-home test and not confirmed by a second test from a health care provider or testing site.
  • Read more about at-home tests in the WI DHS At-Home COVID-19 Tests fact sheet.

 

Outbreak or Significant Increase in Cases:

  • If your facility experiences a suspected outbreak (two or more cases which are linked through close contact) or large increase in COVID-19 cases or illness in general, please reach out to the City of Racine Public Health Department.
  • Contact us at [email protected] or call 262-636-9201. Select Option 1 or 2 (for English or Spanish, respectively) and then Option 5. Leave a message if your call is not answered.
  • When contacting us, provide the following:
    • Facility name and location,
    • Best contact person and their contact information,
    • Number of ill and exposed children, staff, visitors, etc., and
    • Other relevant information based on your facility.

 

IMPORTANT:
Due to recent alterations to COVID-19 disease investigation and contact tracing protocols, not all individuals will be contacted by the Public Health Department after a positive test or notice of close contact. It is essential that childcare facilities exclude those who are ill or test positive while also notifying and excluding close contacts, as appropriate.

Childcare facilities should not require employees or families to have documentation or a release letter from the Public Health Department for returning to work/care. Facilities also should not require those who tested positive for COVID-19 to provide a negative test result prior to returning to work; instead, follow the guidance above.

CLOSE CONTACTS

Determine Who is a Close Contact:

  • A close contact is someone who meets one of the following criteria:
    • Spending a cumulative 15 minutes or more in a 24-hour period within 6 feet of someone with COVID-19 during their infectious period (the two days prior to symptom onset or the test date, if asymptomatic), or
    • Having direct contact with the infected person during their infectious period.

 

Determine if a Close Contact Must Quarantine:

  • See the latest guidance for quarantine details:
  • After close contact with someone who has COVID-19, the need to quarantine depends on an individual’s vaccination status and recent history of COVID-19 infection:
    • If Up-to-Date on COVID-19 Vaccinations:
      • No need to self-quarantine at home.
      • Must wear a mask for 10 full days (after the exposure) when around others, especially in public. Do not go places where a mask cannot be worn.
      • Monitor for symptoms for 10 days (after the exposure). If symptoms develop, self-isolate immediately and get tested if possible.
      • Get tested for COVID-19 at least 5 days after the last exposure.
      • Take precautions if traveling and avoid being around people who are at higher risk of severe complications from COVID-19.
    • If NOT Up-to-Date on COVID-19 Vaccinations:
      • Must self-quarantine at home for at least 5 days after the exposure. Wear a mask when around others in the home.
      • Get tested for COVID-19 at least 5 days after the last exposure, if possible.
      • After quarantining at home for 5 days, must wear a mask when around others in public for 5 additional days. Do not go places where a mask cannot be worn.
      • Returning to daily activities after 5 full days of quarantine is dependent upon the ability to properly wear a mask at all times while in public. As this is difficult to achieve for children in a childcare facility, management may decide to implement a policy requiring an individual be excluded for 10 full days following close contact. Facilities may set policies that specify longer (but not shorter) isolation periods. Families and employees should follow their facility’s policies and procedures for returning following close contact with COVID-19.
      • Monitor for symptoms for 10 days (after the exposure). If symptoms develop, self-isolate immediately and get tested if possible.
      • Do not travel and avoid being around people who are at higher risk of severe complications from COVID-19.
      • Most children in a childcare facility are not yet eligible for vaccination against COVID-19 and would fall into this category after close contact.
    • If Tested Positive for COVID-19 Within the Past 90 Days:
      • The positive test must have been conducted by a health care provider or authorized testing site; at-home COVID-19 tests DO NOT qualify unless proctored by a health care professional.
      • No need to self-quarantine at home.
      • Must wear a mask for 10 full days (after the exposure) when around others, especially in public. Do not go places where a mask cannot be worn.
      • Monitor for symptoms for 10 days (after the exposure). If symptoms develop, self-isolate immediately and get tested if possible.
      • Take precautions if traveling and avoid being around people who are at higher risk of severe complications from COVID-19.

 

Next Steps:

  • Notify families of children who, per the above guidance, must be excluded from the facility.
    • Do not release any information about the individual who tested positive (including whether it was a child or staff member).
    • Inform them of the exposure and that proper actions are taking place, including the exclusion of close contacts who must quarantine.
    • Provide them with their child’s anticipated return date. This must include, at a minimum, 5 full days of quarantine after the date of last exposure.
    • Inform them that they should monitor their children for symptoms of COVID-19.
    • Request that they notify the facility if their child develops symptoms or tests positive.
    • Refer them to this website and the resources below for additional information.
  • Notify staff members who have been exposed, and exclude those who must quarantine per the guidance above.
  • Consider closure of affected classrooms, additional targeted cleaning, and reinforcing mask usage and hand hygiene in the facility to limit further spread.

 

IMPORTANT:
Due to recent alterations to COVID-19 disease investigation and contact tracing protocols, not all individuals will be contacted by the Public Health Department after a positive test or notice of close contact. It is essential that
childcare facilities exclude those who are required to quarantine per the above criteria in order to stop further spread of disease.

Childcare facilities also should not require families or employees to have documentation or a release letter from the Public Health Department for returning to the facility; instead, follow the guidance above.

QUESTIONS?

Email [email protected] or call 262-636-9201 and select Option 1, then Option 5. Inform the front desk you are calling from a childcare facility with a COVID-19 question or concern and your call will be directed appropriately. If you do not receive an answer, leave a message with your name, the name of the business, contact information, and your question or concern. Your call will be returned as quickly as possible.

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