Childcare providers say they’re worried of rising infection rates and potential closures due to the decision to allow asymptomatic children who’re close contacts stay in creche.
Previously children who were close contacts and had no symptoms still had to self-isolate and get tested.
But from Monday those in childcare facilities and the majority of those in primary school won’t need to.
NPHET says now is the right time as there’s no evidence the reopening of schools has led to an increase in transmission or infection levels.
Chair of Federation of Early Childhood Providers, Elaine Dunne, says they’re seriously concerned.
Urlingford based Mick Kenny of the Association of Childhood Professionals has been telling KCLR News “Yesterday’s announcement came as a great surprise because from talking to providers around the country, we’re still seeing cases coming in to centres and if anything it’s a bit like the primary school sector, we are hearing of a good few cases around and our fear is that if they don’t continue contact tracing there is a risk of it being passed on through families”.
He adds “If they’re not going to continue on with contact tracing how are we going to know the numbers around how many children are infected but also as well as that how many staff are going to be infected, I know, thankfully, the majority of staff out there are vaccinated but just because you’re vaccinated, I’ve spoken to several services where we’ve had cases of vaccinated staff actually getting Covid, thankfully not getting very sick but it’s still transmissible so I think it’s a little bit too early, I think everybody’s very excited to get back to normal but I do think we should be erring on the side of caution”.