Rule: What must I do to prevent the spread of germs when diapering children?

Girl Washing Hands

Children who are learning to use the toilet may still soil their pull-ups or underwear and clothing. Minimum standard rules for child care centers and homes (chapters 746 & 747) now require soiled clothing to be safely stored in a sealed plastic bag to be sent home with the child. The intent of this rule is to decrease the risk of spreading infection by preventing contamination.

Cloth Diaper


How should soiled clothing be handled prior to placement in a sealed plastic bag?

Soiled clothing should be placed directly in the plastic bag. To avoid contamination of otherwise clean surfaces that are routinely used by children and caregivers, soiled clothing should not be rinsed in the sink or toilet prior to placement in a sealed plastic bag. If clothing is soiled with solid fecal matter, the fecal matter can be carefully disposed in and flushed down the toilet.

 Consider This!

Jake is making progress in his toilet training; however, he still experiences accidents on occasion. Jake was complaining about his tummy earlier and has just had an accident. You grab the alternate clothing Jake's mom has provided and begin helping him remove his soiled clothing. Jake's underwear is soiled with urine and feces.

Which answer option represents the safest way to avoid contaminating other surfaces with hazardous germs?


Technical Assistance: If these procedures are new to your operation, consider sending a newsletter to parents explaining the new procedures and asking parents who have children still learning to use the toilet to provide an extra set of clothing.

What is considered a "sealed" plastic bag?

We now know that minimum standard rules require soiled clothing and blood contaminated disposable gloves be stored in a sealed plastic bag. The intention of these requirements is to create an additional barrier to decrease the possibility of direct and indirect contact with hazardous substances and materials. So what is considered a "sealed" plastic bag?

Ways to seal a plastic bag:

Examples of Sealed Plastic Bags

Technical Assistance: Consider repurposing clean plastic bags you have already used from groceries and produce.