Child care providers need to use caution when giving medications to children in their care. Medications include those prescribed by a doctor, such as antibiotics and nebulizers, and medicines a parent purchased over the counter. Keep in mind that creams and ointments such as diaper rash cream, sunscreen, and insect repellent are also considered medications. Child care providers must have written consent and instructions from a parent to give children any type of medication, including sunscreen or diaper rash cream.
Child care programs need to set up a clear procedure for giving medications to children. Getting parents' written consent and documenting each dose of the medication are essential parts of the process. The following articles have some ideas and tips for administering medications safely in a child care setting.