AAP Announces New Pediatric Waiting Room Rules Just in Time for Flu Season

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The American Academy of Pediatrics has released updated pediatric waiting room rules. And they come just in time for flu season when it seems like every child in the world is covered in boogers. I appreciate the AAP going the extra mile and trying to keep kids healthy. But I feel like some of these should be no-brainers? However, having been in a pediatric waiting room many a time, I know that these needed to be laid out very, very clearly. Seriously, some parents just don’t get it.

The updated pediatric waiting room rules are designed to help pediatrician’s offices prevent the spread of disease.

Taking your child to the doctor when they’re sick is stressful. But taking your kid when they’re healthy is even worse. There’s nothing like being trapped in a small room with a bunch of germy-ass kids running around. The last two doctors my kids have seen have both had separate waiting rooms for sick kids and well-visits. And that is a LIFESAVER. But for offices that don’t have the space, the new guidelines are in place to help keep the plague from spreading.

The new rules follow many of the same guidelines that hospitals do. They recommend having alcohol-based sanitizer in the waiting room, as well as sterile masks to keep kids from spewing mucus and spit across the room.

Image: Giphy

The new pediatric waiting room rules are a great first step. But parents, listen here: if your kid is sick, PLEASE CONTAIN THEM. Hand sanitizer and masks can only do so much! I’ve seen so many parents let their Patient Zero run amuck around the waiting room, coating every surface with god knows what. We’ve all got to do our part. Sometimes that means locking your kid in your lap to spare the rest of us.

The AAP also endorsed mandatory flu shots for all healthcare providers and employees, as well as proof of other vaccines. Additionally, they suggest that waiting rooms only have toys that can be easily disinfected, and that they cleaned frequently. No giant stuffed bears, please.

We all want to keep our kids healthy, but honestly, it isn’t always possible. Kids get sick, they need to see the doctor, and that’s just the way life goes. But hopefully with these new rules, and some due diligence on the part of parents everywhere, we can prevent the zombie apocalypse from starting in the waiting room.

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(Image: iStock / XiXinXing)