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Home > Media > Press Releases > Keep kids safe around water this summer

6/18/2020

Keep kids safe around water this summer


Oconto Falls, Wis. – As the weather heats up and more children and families head to pools and beaches, HSHS St. Clare Memorial Hospital in Oconto Falls reminds parents and caregivers to keep an eye on their kids and actively supervise them when they are in and around water.

Although many community pools are opting to remain closed this summer for safety reasons, children are still at a high risk for drowning, even in less-crowded backyard pools. According to the  Centers for Disease Control and Prevention , among children ages 1 to 4, most drownings occur in home swimming pools. Among those 1 to 14, drowning remains the second-leading cause of unintentional injury-related death behind motor vehicle crashes.

“A drowning child cannot cry or shout for help, so simply being near your child doesn’t always help,” says Dr. Kyle McCarty, emergency medicine physician for HSHS hospitals in Eastern Wisconsin. “It is important to keep your eyes on your children at all times.”

Studies show although 90 percent of parents say they supervise their children while swimming, many acknowledge they engage in other distracting activities at the same time such as talking, eating, reading or taking care of another child.

Tips to keep children safe around water:
  1. Give them your undivided attention. Actively supervise children in and around water, without distraction. When there are several adults present, designate one as the “water watcher” for a certain amount of time (such as 15-20 minute periods) to prevent lapses in supervision.
  2. Teach them to never swim alone. In any body of water, teach children to swim with an older, more experienced swimmer. From a young age, also teach them to never go near or in water without an adult present.
  3. Use proper floatation devices. Small children and weak swimmers should wear an age-appropriate, well-fitted life jacket any time they are near water. Inflatable toys, rafts, and water wings should never be used as lifesaving devices.
  4. Create barriers. Barriers, such as pool fencing, prevent young children from gaining access to the pool area without caregivers’ awareness. A four-sided isolation fence (separating the pool area from the house and yard) reduces a child’s risk of drowning 83-percent compared to three-sided property-line fencing.
  5. Learn CPR. CPR will give you the skills to help in an emergency until professional medical responders arrive.
  6. Be careful around pool drains. Teach your children about the dangers of drain entanglement and entrapment and teach them never to play or swim near drains or suction outlets.
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About HSHS St. Clare Memorial Hospital
HSHS St. Clare Memorial Hospital serves Oconto Falls and the surrounding communities as a federally-designated critical access hospital with a 24-hour emergency department, urgent care, general, vascular and orthopedic surgical services, inpatient and outpatient surgical and diagnostic services, rehabilitation, oncology outpatient clinic and women’s care. HSHS St. Clare Memorial Hospital, in affiliation with Prevea Health, has six regional health center locations in Gillett, Lena, Mountain, Oconto, Oconto Falls and Suring. HSHS St. Clare Memorial Hospital Pharmacies are located in Gillett and Oconto Falls. Founded in 1921 as Community Memorial Hospital, in 2014, HSHS St. Clare Memorial Hospital became the fourteenth hospital in Hospital Sisters Health System. As an affiliate of Hospital Sisters Health System, we draw on the history of St. Francis of Assisi as we move to continue serving the health care needs of our area in Christ’s healing ministry, caring for all people. For more information about St. Clare, visit www.stclarememorial.org.
 
About Hospital Sisters Health System
Hospital Sisters Health System’s (HSHS) mission is to reveal and embody Christ’s healing love for all people through our high quality, Franciscan health care ministry. HSHS provides state-of-the-art health care to our patients and is dedicated to serving all people, especially the most vulnerable, at each of our 15 Local Systems and physician practices in Illinois (Breese, Decatur, Effingham, Greenville, Highland, Litchfield, O’Fallon, Shelbyville and Springfield) and Wisconsin (Chippewa Falls, Eau Claire, Oconto Falls, Sheboygan, and two in Green Bay). HSHS is sponsored by Hospital Sisters Ministries, and Hospital Sisters of St. Francis is the founding institute. For more information about HSHS, visit www.hshs.org. For more information about Hospital Sisters of St. Francis, visit www.hospitalsisters.org.

Media Contacts


Angela Deja
Public Relations Coordinator
angela.deja@hshs.org
(920) 272-3360

Dana Jermstad
Senior Communications and Public Relations Manager
dana.jermstad@hshs.org
(920) 429-1752
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