Unsurprisingly, one of the first things parents looking round our nurseries ask us is about how we manage food allergies.
With allergies and intolerance on the rise, we take the issues extremely seriously and have stringent processes in place to ensure every child in our care is fully protected.
We don’t usually have to bring up the subject in our initial meetings with parents because they usually do it for us.
But if for some reason they forget, or don’t think the issue is relevant to them, we make sure we raise it so everyone is aware of how we manage it.
So, just what processes do we have in place to manage allergies and intolerances, to make sure your child is protected? Below is a summary of the lengths we go to.
Showing parents round
When we show new prospect parents around a Tiptoes nursery, they will often bring up the subject of allergies.
We feel our job, at this point, is to reassure those parents that if they do decide to put their children in our care, they will be given the best protection we can offer.
Therefore, at this stage, we talk the prospective parents through all the things we routinely do to ensure their child won’t come into contact with anything they’re allergic or intolerant to, and what we would do if they did.
By doing this, we ensure the topic is dealt with openly and to enable parents to ask any question they might have which are worrying them.
Enrolling in the nursery
Once parents decide to enrol their child with us, on of the first things we do is ask them to complete a form that includes information about any allergies and intolerances they have, and any medical conditions.
This enables us to put together an Individual Health Plan (IHP) for each child in our care.
As the name suggests, the IHP is bespoked to your child and every member of staff involved with the care of your child will see it and learn exactly what steps are needed to ensure it is adhered to at all times.
It breaks down any allergy, intolerance or condition the child suffers from into three components – what the condition is, how it is prevented and what the treatment plan is.
The IHP is signed by the parents and by us, and we review it along with the parents every three months to make any necessary changes.
Details in every room
Once the IHP is established and we know as much as we can about the allergy, how to prevent it and how to treat it should it flare up, we then make sure every room in the nursery has these details on the wall, along with information about which days your child is here and where in the nursery they are.
This ensures our staff do not bring anything into that room which your child might have a reaction to.
Having this awareness throughout the nursery is a crucial step in managing allergies and intolerances and our staff are encouraged to always check this information before bringing any foodstuff into any nursery room.
Of course, meals time could be a potential risk to your child. That’s why we are extra meticulous at to ensure they don’t come into contact with anything that could cause an allergic reaction.
Our cooks are always fully aware of the dietary requirements of every child in our care. This is a huge part of their role and something we insist they are up-to-date with.
Along with this, all the children with food allergies or intolerances in our care have an individual placemat with details of their dietary requirements, ensuring no one can forget what they can and cannot have.
Finally, children with severe allergies are seated together, close to but not immediately next to children with no allergies.
This prevents them sharing food or accidently picking up something from another child’s plate which could bring about a reaction.
First aid trained
As you can see, we do our utmost to ensure your child never comes into contact with something that could cause him or her to have a reaction. Managing allergies in this way is part of the very culture of Tiptoes Day Nurseries.
But if despite all of our efforts, something unexpected occurs and your child has an allergic reaction, all of our staff are first aid-trained, including managing severe allergic reaction.
So, even in the absolute worse-case scenario, at Tiptoes Day Nurseries, your child is in the best possible care.