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Ms. Hester is Content Specialist with Contemporary OB/GYN and Contemporary Pediatrics.
As more children return to the pediatric office, the need to create safety protocols is imperative. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has created guidance for developing them.
The American Academy of Pediatrics has updated their interim guidance for testing children for COVID-19, infection control, and personal protective equipment (PPE) protocols.1 The guidance also stresses that understanding of the disease is constantly changing and the guidance may continue changing in the future.
The overarching guidance includes:
The guidance next addressed risk mitigation strategies and PPE. It addresses the fact that medical-grade PPE is in short supply in many areas of the country, which has led to the need to reusing such equipment. It recommends that practices define the rules for extended use and reuse during care. It also recommends disinfection, creating physical barriers, setting up paths for patient flow, and increasing air ventilation. There are also recommendations for what PPE to wear in common situations:
The guidance also recommends that practices have hand sanitizer available for all patients and families that enter the practice. Practices should also require all patients aged ≥2 years and families wear face coverings and ensure physical distancing when possible.
1. American Academy of Pediatrics. Guidance on the use of personal protective equipment (ppe) for pediatric care in ambulatory care settings during the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic. Services.aap.org. Updated September 30, 2020. Accessed October 20, 2020. https://services.aap.org/en/pages/2019-novel-coronavirus-covid-19-infections/clinical-guidance/guidance-on-the-use-of-personal-protective-equipment-ppe-for-pediatric-care-in-ambulatory-care-settings-during-the-sars-cov-2-pandemic/.