Dear Sunshine Families ,
Due to circumstances I will describe below we will not be open tomorrow Wednesday, March 18th. It has come to our attention that one of our team members was in close quarters this past Sunday with an individual that potentially has tested positive for COVID-19. I say potentially because at this time we do not have all the facts. This staff member was not present in the building today but was present on Monday. We have been working over the past hours to get the best information we could, unfortunately the picture is incomplete at this time. We have spoken at length with the Department of Health. DOH has advised that, even if the exposure is confirmed, the risk is minimal as it takes some time from exposure until that person can infect others. DOH advised us that assuming that the staff member did in fact have contact with a positive individual (worst case scenario), their recommendation is to perform a thorough disinfection of the building. They did not recommend shutting down. As you know we disinfect the building throughout and at the end of each day. However, we will take tomorrow to perform a second complete disinfection with a fine-mist sprayer using an EPA/FDA approved disinfection solution. We will also work to get all the fact and get them to you, so that you have accurate and confirmed information.
As you know we have split our team in half, Team A and Team B. Team A was in the building this past Monday and today, while Team B was at home. Splitting the staff was done for a number of reasons, but one of the reasons was the possibility of this exact situation. If need be, we can open the building on Thursday with Team B which has been home the last two days. In addition, as you know we implemented a number of isolation procedures, again designed to limit any possible spread should any individual test positive or have contact with a positive individual.
Again, I want to stress that at this time none of the staff have tested positive for COVID-19, nor are any staff members presumed positive. The DOH has not contacted any staff to direct self-quarantine nor ordered any mandatory quarantine. A staff member spent time in close quarters with an individual that has potentially tested positive. We have chosen to follow DOH recommendations assuming that worst case scenario.
We do not take this decision lightly. We know that those families that have needed to bring their children to Sunshine Starts over the past few days did so because the need was great and better options did not exist. At the same time, we need to ensure the safety of the children you place in our care and of our staff that we ask to care for the children during these times of uncertainty.
In accordance with DOH guidance, we will disinfect the building tomorrow and, following DOH recommendation, it is our intention to reopen on Thursday. We will send further updates tomorrow as we have verified information regarding this issue.
As always we thank you for your support and understanding.