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When Your Nanny Must Medicate Your Child

Administering medication can be a tricky thing.  If your little Johnny takes two medicines, one tablet every six hours and one liquid every eight hours, your nanny must be attentive to detail in order to administer the medicines on time and in the proper dosages.  Here are some tips for you when your nanny must medicate your child.

1.      Create a medicine check-off sheet.  For example:

Monday, 8 am, one tablet and 8 oz. of liquid

Monday, 2pm, one tablet

Monday, 4pm, 8 oz. of liquid

Monday, 8 pm, one tablet

Monday, midnight, 8 oz. of liquid

Tuesday, 2 am, one tablet

Tuesday, 8 am, one tablet and 8 oz. of liquid

Tuesday, 2 pm, one tablet

Tuesday, 4 pm, 8 oz. of liquid

Tuesday, 8 pm, one tablet

2.      Store the medicines where your nanny (and not Johnny) can access them.  The check-off sheet noted in #1 above can be stored in the same location.

3.      Show your nanny how to administer the medicine.  Administer each medicine once on your own; have your nanny observe and ask questions.  For example, your nanny may ask, “Does Johnny need to have food in his tummy before he takes that tablet?”  Discuss with your nanny the patient information fact sheet that typically accompanies medicines.  These fact sheets will cover what side effects may occur from taking the medicines, what should be done when specific side effects manifest, etc.  Make sure your nanny knows what side effects to look for and how to respond to them.

4.      Ensure that your nanny is comfortable administering the medicine.  If one of Johnny’s medicines is administered subcutaneously (i.e., by injection), your nanny need help getting comfortable with handling needles.  She will also need to be trained on the proper disposal of used needles and the risks of bloodborne pathogens.

5.      If Johnny has a serious illness, you may be well advised to hire a nanny that is also a CNA (certified nursing assistant) or an LPN (licensed practical nurse).

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