Deaths in Minn. day cares rising, mostly in home-based settings

  • Article by: BRAD SCHRADE , Star Tribune
  • Updated: March 5, 2012 - 9:45 AM

Fatalities are concentrated in home-based providers. Officials are trying to find out why.

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sternitzkyMar. 4, 12 7:13 AM

One important question that is not answered in this article, what is the rate of death for children being cared for at home by a parent? Higher, lower, similar? That is important to know to help find an answer.

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kspudsMar. 4, 12 7:27 AM

Kim Bartick, president of the Hennepin County Licensed Family Child Care Association, said... "she knows family providers who have left center work because they believed it was not as good an environment for children." That statement was made by a person who is positioned to support in-home childcare? While there are some really wonderful in-home centers, there are also some really terrible ones. The lack of proper monitoring (by organizations including the one Bartick is employed by) on the county level is the reason my children will never be in an in-home childcare setting. 51 deaths in 5 years? That's alarming. The number of deaths in 2012 - that suggests a need for increased monitoring on the county level.

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hockeyfoxMar. 4, 12 8:04 AM

Bought and paid for by Commercial Daycare Centers? How many infants are in commercial daycare vs home based daycare? And how many of these deaths are through neglect? It seems at every turn of the corner it is easy to gang up on the in home daycare centers. Kspuds, you have no idea what you are talking about. If you kids are not in a home daycare, how do YOU know how they are monitored vs a commercial daycare. Do you think commercial daycares have the county monitoring 24/7?

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hockeyfoxMar. 4, 12 8:08 AM

"When you do the math, if you present that appropriately, there's actually fewer deaths per program in family child care than per center," Let's suggest we tax all families an additional 10% so we can have a county worker at every daycare home and facility in Minnesota. Guess what, SIDS deaths are still going to happen.

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yathinksoMar. 4, 12 8:13 AM

How many infants are in family home daycares vs the larger facilities. All my friends who had kids brought theirs to an in home daycare. The larger facilities are way too expensive and some just don't want to take infants. Seems more analysis needs to be done before we criminalize all family day cares.

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TAZUGLYMar. 4, 12 8:53 AM

I agree the numbers seem skewed. I would also take a different stance. What is the overall health of the children? Facilities are expensive and so is it the richer families that use them? Are the richer families blessed with better health care benefits, better food intake, etc. Are the babies in family settings possibly at a slight disadvantage making them more susceptible to illness/problems? What percentage was neglect in home day care and what was SID? Looking more deeply into the causes of death may bring understanding of how to improve health of babies not just the day care facilities. I have a friend who finished nursing her baby and while in her arms the baby had stopped breathing. If that mom had closed her eyes or put the baby down in a crib that baby would have died. She did not and the child lived. No amount of eyes or safety in her environment would have saved that child. That is what SID is about. Do not confuse that with neglect. With technology the way it is today. I think EVERY day care (home or facility) should have baby monitoring cameras that parents can view anytime to check on the health and well being of their baby/child at any time. What better way to have the second pair of eyes be that of mom or dad!

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prowlerMar. 4, 12 8:55 AM

The article says that over the past 10 years there have been 75 deaths in daycares. Three of the deaths (4%) have occurred at daycare centers and 72 (96%) have occurred at home daycares. The article also states that there are currently 152,210 children in daycare settings. Forty percent (40%) of these children are in daycare centers and 60% are at in-home daycare. So, 60% of the facilities are seeing 96% of the deaths. It does seem to be an area we should be concerned about.

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ldahlkeMar. 4, 12 9:03 AM

I don't believe anyone is making in-home day care providers criminals here. The article is just stating there is a higher trend of deaths at all facilities and it needs to be looked into. To note, both methods of representing the number of deaths used comparing in-home to center providers in this article are inaccurate, they should have noted number of deaths against total children cared for, for an accurate representation.

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qwerty123Mar. 4, 12 9:04 AM

"When you do the math, if you present that appropriately, there's actually fewer deaths per program in family child care than per center" True but misleading. Without knowing the absolute numbers of children, it is still possible to calculate relative risk based on the numbers in the article. 66.7% of children are in home based day care, but 96% of deaths in the past decade are in home day care. That means that 4% of deaths were among the 33.3% in institutional day care. Thus, the relative rate of death is 12 times higher in the home based setting.

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justicforallMar. 4, 12 9:04 AM

The article is not implying that home based daycares are bad or good they are just saying that the number of deaths has increased significantly in the last 5 years when compared to the previous 5. It questions the cause and notes a change in legislation that has occurred during this timeframe as well which may contribute to this increase in deaths. Studies have shown that infants placed on their stomachs (or sides for that matter) have a higher risk of SIDS and that babies placed in an "unaccustomed" sleep position (on stomach when used to sleeping one their back) have a risk even greater then that! Most parents and daycare providers are onboard with sleep recommendations but there remains a groups of hold outs. I LOVED that they day care provider quoted stated that she chooses to follow back to sleep recommendations even if parents tell her not to! Smart woman! I would never want to have to live with the "what ifs" if I chose to not follow the recommendation no matter who suggested I do so!

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