An Integrated Pest Management Intervention Improves Knowledge, Pest Control, and Practices in Family Child Care Homes

To reduce young children’s exposure to pesticides when attending family child care homes (FCCHs), the authors developed an integrated pest management (IPM) intervention for FCCH directors. First, IPM educational materials and resources were developed to provide the foundation for an IPM educational intervention for FCCHs. Next, a six-month nurse child care health consultant (CCHC)-led education and consultation IPM intervention was conducted and evaluated to increase IPM knowledge, IPM practices, IPM policies, and decrease the presence or evidence of pests. The pilot intervention study was conducted by three CCHCs in 20 FCCHs in three counties in California. Pre- and post-intervention measures were completed by the FCCH directors and observation measures were completed by the CCHCs. Results indicated significant increases in IPM knowledge, (t-statistic (degrees of freedom), (t(df) = 2.55(10), p < 0.05), increases in IPM practices (t(df) = -6.47(17), p < 0.05), and a 90% reduction in the prevalence of pests. There were no significant differences in changes in IPM practices based on director education, FCCH county, or IPM intervention intensity or duration. A nurse-led IPM education and consultation intervention can reduce exposures of young children attending family child care homes to harmful chemicals.

Authors: Stephens M, Hazard K, Moser D, Cox D, Rose R, Alkon A. ; Full Source: International Journal of Environmental Research & Public Health. 2017 Oct 26; 14(11). pii: E1299. doi: 10.3390/ijerph14111299.