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COVID-19 Resources

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

COVID-19 FAQs

Q: What are the quarantine and isolation guidelines for child care settings? – Updated September 26, 2022

Due to declining COVID-19 case rates and high levels of immunity, Oregon Health Authority has removed the quarantine requirement for individuals exposed to COVID-19 in child care and K-12 settings. Individuals who test positive must be excluded from child care and isolate at home for 5 days. They may then return when symptoms are resolving and fever-free for 24 hours. When returning to care, that individual should wear a well-fitting mask in child care and public settings for 5 days after their isolation started. Early education and child care programs must notify families of an exposure so they can watch for symptoms, but children/staff exposed do not need to be excluded unless they develop symptoms or test positive. Early education and child care programs may choose to impose stricter isolation, quarantine or masking requirements.

Q: Does a child care program need to close if there’s a positive COVID-19 case? If so, for how long?

ELD does not require closure of programs. However, a program may need to close if there are too many staff excluded for isolation maintain operations and staffing ratios.

Q: What are child care providers required to communicate to families if there is a positive COVID-19 case? – Updated September 26, 2022

Early education and child care programs must notify families of an exposure so they can watch for symptoms, but children/staff exposed do not need to be excluded unless they are symptomatic or positive.

Q: Can a parent ask if a child care staff member is vaccinated?

The Early Learning Division does not have authority to determine if parents are allowed to ask vaccination status. A provider or staff member may choose to answer or not.

Q: Are masks still required indoors? – Updated September 26, 2022

The statewide indoor mask requirement ended on March 11, 2022. A child care program can choose whether to require masks.

The Early Learning Division and the Oregon Health Authority in alignment with the Center for Disease Control, strongly recommend that masks be worn by all individuals age 2 and older indoors when:

  • There are high  levels of COVID-19 transmission in communities
  • There are medium  levels of COVID-19 transmission and individuals are:
    • Unvaccinated
    • Immunocompromised
    • At high risk of COVID-19 hospitalization
    • 65 and older or with underlying health conditions
    • Living with people who have underlying health conditions.

Some programs may choose to continue universal masking at lower COVID-19 community levels because it promotes an inclusive and supportive environment for those children and staff who are at higher risk for severe COVID-19.

Q: Can a parent ask their child care program to support distance learning?

This is a business decision that should be made by individual programs.

Q: Are testing kits available to child care programs? – Updated September 26, 2022

If you need a COVID-19 test, find resources here and here.

Q: Can a provider accept an at home COVID-19 test?

Yes

Q: Can you explain what is a “well-fitting mask” for children?

It’s any mask that fits snuggly and the child will wear reliably.

Q: Where can I find additional resources?

Oregon Health Authority COVID-19 Resources (general): https://govstatus.egov.com/or-oha-covid-resources

Oregon Health Authority COVID-19 Resources: Supporting Families Prenatally to Age 5:
https://www.oregon.gov/oha/PH/HEALTHYPEOPLEFAMILIES/DATAREPORTS/Pages/COVID-19-Resources.aspx

Q: Is daily symptom screening still recommended?

Daily screening is no longer required. However, staff and family should be aware of COVID-19 symptoms, and individuals should be excluded if symptoms develop. If symptomatic, it is recommended they get tested for COVID-19.

Q: Are child care providers still required to notify Local Public Health if there is a positive COVID-19 case in their facility? – Updated September 26, 2022

Providers are required to notify the Local Public Health Authority immediately of unusually high levels of absenteeism (on any given day) due to respiratory illnesses (symptoms may include new cough, fever, shortness of breath, congestion/runny nose, new loss of taste or smell).

  • In home-based child care programs, providers must report to Local Public Health Authority when there are three or more staff or children absent due to respiratory illness.
  • In center-based, recorded, and school-based child care programs, providers must report to Local Public Health Authority when there are 10 or more staff or children absent due to respiratory illness.
  • Programs do not need to report elevated absenteeism when there is a non-disease related reason (i.e., day before or after a holiday or long weekend, child care children are participating in an out of school activity, etc.).

CDC COVID Community Levels 

CDC’s COVID-19 Community Levels help communities and individuals make decisions on what COVID-19 prevention strategies to use based on disease transmission rates in the community. The metrics are updated weekly. You can refer to the CDC map for the latest information. These levels factor in a combination of COVID-19 hospitalization rates, healthcare capacity, and cases.

With counties’ transmission levels changing weekly, there is a need for increased prevention strategies in child care during “high risk” periods. When transmission is “high” in your community, we recommend the following:

  • Implement universal indoor masking. All individuals (aged 2 and older) should wear a well-fitting face –covering indoors regardless of vaccination status. Face coverings are effective at preventing the spread of COVID-19 and other respiratory diseases.
  • Stay up to date with COVID-19 vaccines. Information about vaccinations can be found at https://getvaccinated.oregon.gov.
  • Be aware of COVID-19 symptoms, and individuals should be excluded if symptoms develop. If symptomatic, it is recommended they get tested for COVID-19.
  • A child or staff member, regardless of vaccination status, should stay at home if they have primary symptoms of COVID-19 (fever, chills, shortness of breath, new cough, or new loss of taste or smell), or go home if symptoms develop while at a child care facility, and get tested.

Review our COVID-19 Requirements and Recommendations: https://oregonearlylearning.com/COVID-19-Resources/For-Providers

Additional Resources for Providers & Families

The Early Learning Division, in partnership with the Oregon Health Authority, updated requirements for managing COVID-19 in child care. Please continue to stay connected via the Child Care Updates newsletter.