I plan to have a sitter for my partially-vaccinated kids (no MMR, and DD only has one dose of CP vaccine) this summer 20 hours a week for a couple months. She sat for us last summer, and has babysat once a month or so since last summer. She is pregnant, just entering her second trimester.
I didn't even think about my kids' vaccination status re:the babysitter until recently. What is the best way to tell her about it, and are there resources/literature I can provide her with to help her make a decision to work with us this summer or not? Are my kids a risk to her at all?
Her school-year job is working with 5 and 6 year olds, so it's not like she hasn't been around other kids. My kids do occasionally go to a small gym daycare for 1-2 hours at a time, but other than that they are not in preschool or daycare in the summer.
DD 12/07 DS 9/10
I don't know the vax status of the kids I babysit for...if I was pregnant, which I hope to be sometime this year, I wouldn't ask about it-it doesn't matter to me, but then I'm a proponent of non-vaxing...I guess it depends on what your sitter's view of vaxing is...
If it's niggling at you I'd bring it up lightly, "ya know, it occurred to me the other day that my kids aren't fully vaxed and some mamas might be concerned about that being pregnant and all so I just thought you should know. Is that a concern for you at all?" Be open to having a conversation about it and why you choose to be selective. You may open her eyes to a topic she hasn't considered for her own child.
Chances are she needs the job more than she may be worried about a potential increase in her chances of contracting a child hood disease...
if she works in a school where kids are constantly coming to school after receiving their vaccines, then she has already passed thru the potentially worst time(1st trimester) to pick up anything damaging to her pregnancy from a vaccine shedding child. I doubt your kids are shedding their vaccines anymore, whereas at school, who knows which child just got some? You should ask her instead, if she had any concerns about kids shedding their vaccines near her when she was still teaching in the school around the kids. That should indicate to you what her stance is on the issue, and bring it up at that time. If she had no knowledge that some vaccines can shed and potentially infect others, then now is the time to educate her on it.
For the most part I agree with prescottchels. If it is niggling at you - talk to her - particularly if you get the sense this might be a deal breaker for her. People have the right to know their working conditions. I would be inclined to focus on diseases that are relevant to pregnant women (CP and rubella). There is a good possibility she is vaxed against rubella and had CP - but I would still bring it up in a casual way.
On the other hand, I do not divulge my childresn vaccine status unless asked. It is a medical issue and therefore private. Moreover, I refuse to participate in this idea that unvaxxed children are somehow a major threat to society. Statistically and overall, they are not.
1. Vaccines often work - so if you are vaxxed, your chances of cathcing things are unlikely
2. Not all diseases are contagious and many VPD are quite rare.
3. A heck of a lot of adults do not get their boosters, did not get many of the newer vaccines, etc...something many people forget in their worries on the unvaxxed children walking among us.
Thanks for the responses. I feel that she should know that my kids are not vaxed against rubella, measles, and CP. I wish I had thought to tell her sooner so I could have done it in person. I'll need to call her now as we won't see her until her first day in a few weeks.
It also reminds me to look up symptoms of stuff like fifth disease, cmv, etc., although as someone who works with young kids she could probably recognize all that stuff better than me.
DD 12/07 DS 9/10