News outlets today are reporting that children will no longer be able to blow out candles on birthday cakes at child care centres, under new Government Guidelines.
The Australian Medical Association has equated the rules to ‘bubble wrapping’ children.
Tanya Plibersek is the Federal Minister for Health and has written exclusively for Mamamia, explaining that the guidelines have been misrepresented by the media.
By TANYA PLIBERSEK
Every parent knows what it’s like when a child comes home from child care with a bug.
It’s miserable for the child, parents are often forced to miss work to stay home to care for them and the whole family can end up getting sick.
Staying Healthy in Child Care, is a set of tips written by scientists at the National Health and Medical Research Council for child care centres.
It makes sensible recommendations on how to minimise the spread of infectious disease.
Contrary to media reports, the guide doesn’t “ban” communal birthday cakes or blowing out candles at child care centres.
What it does suggest is that children blow out candles on a cupcake rather than a large cake that will be eaten by other children.
Many child care centres do this already. Obviously a child who has a cold or virus shouldn’t be blowing all over other people’s food.
For the record, the guide also recommends that children wash their hands a couple of times a day. Importantly, the guide says that children who are sick should stay home.
It’s just common sense.
Tanya Plibersek is the Federal Minister for Health and Member for Sydney.