School & Early Childhood

School & Early Childhood2018-05-25T16:40:00+00:00

We contract with area day care providers, pre-schools and other public and private education programs to provide early childhood health consultation. This consultation is furnished by an Early Childhood Health Consultant (ECHC).

What is an Early Childhood Health Consultant (ECHC)?

An ECHC is a registered nurse (RN) – often a pediatric or public health nurse – who is trained in child care health and safety and works with child care staff and providers to support and encourage quality child care. ECHCs are experienced in or knowledgeable about children’s health issues and the community resources available for staff, children, and parents.

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Why is an EHCH important?

The services provided by an EHCH are essential to quality child care and vital to the optimal health, safety and well-being of young children. Special programs include:

  • Pediatric CPR and first aid
  • Allergies and EpiPen use
  • Infection control in preschool programs
  • Medication administration in child care
  • Epilepsy- seizure disorders and care
  • Summer health issues
  • Winter/cold weather care, sniffles and sneezes
  • Playground safety and supervision
  • Infant care program
  • Home safety review for parents
  • Personal safety for preschoolers— SAFE CHILD
  • Toy safety
  • Holiday health for families
  • Emergency preparedness for families
  • Immunization update
  • Developmental play
  • SIDS/preventing crib death

The primary goals of an ECHC are to:

  • Promote health and safety practices in child care— infection control and injury prevention
  • Provide health and safety information through health consultation and educational outreach to staff and parents
  • Promote optimal social, emotional, cognitive, physical and mental health for children in out-of-home care
  • Support developmentally-appropriate care
  • Facilitate preventive health care
  • Positively affect and improve the quality of child care

The primary responsibilities of an ECHC are to provide:

  • On-site visits to child care centers and family child care homes (not required by Early Education and Care)
  • Telephone consultation and information
  • Assessment and development of each program’s health and safety practices and health policy, as mandated by the Department of Early Education and Care’s licensing component
  • Coordination and provision of health education programs
  • Assistance with  children’s health records maintenance
  • Referrals and linkages with appropriate community resources and special services
  • Assistance with plans for inclusion of children with special needs
  • Assistance with the annual Massachusetts Department of Public Health (MDPH) Immunization Survey
  • On-site safety tour and evaluation.
For more information, call us at (508) 653-3081 or click here.