Child Care Health

The Child Care Health program provides consultation and training to Child Care Health Consultants (CCHC) in the state of Minnesota. Program staff work to promote positive health and safety outcome for children, families and staff involved in early childhood settings.

What is a Child Care Health Consultant?

In the state of Minnesota, a child care health consultant (CCHC) is a licensed health professional (RN, PHN, MD) with education and experience in child and public health, early childhood education and preferably specialized training in child care health consultation. Both the Caring for Our Children (CFOC) standards and the National Association for the Education of Young Children´s (NAEYC) accreditation criteria identify child care health consultation as an important component of a high quality early childhood education program.

What does a Child Care Health Consultant do?

The role of the CCHC is to promote the health and development of children, families and staff and to ensure a healthy and safe child care environment. This can be accomplished through consultation, training, resource information, referral, and technical assistance provided to early childhood educators in center–based and family child care settings. Some examples of CCHC activities include:

  • Consulting on–site or by telephone or email on child health and safety matters
  • Reviewing and/or helping with the development of health and safety policies and procedures
  • Conducting a comprehensive health and safety assessment of the indoor and outdoor environments; identifying and implementing health and safety improvement plans.
  • Reviewing and updating health records for children and child care providers
  • Providing community resource information and referral for health, mental health, oral health and social needs including medical homes, health insurance, and services for children with special health needs
  • Ensuring a method for communication between the early childhood education provider, family and primary health care provider, and consulting when health issues arise
  • Helping to manage the care of children with developmental concerns, social–emotional concerns and those with special health care needs
  • Providing training to child care providers, families, and children on topics such as child health and development, nutrition and physical activity, injury prevention, management of illness, medication administration, prevention and control of infectious diseases, oral health, mental health and environmental health
  • Assuring compliance with national health and safety standards
  • Interpreting standards or regulations and providing technical assistance for health and safety matters

Contact:

Diane Etling, MS, PHN, LSN, CPNP
Child Care Health Consultant
Minnesota Department of Health
Phone: 651-201-3586
Email: diane.etling@state.mn.us