CHICAGO (CBS) —Some states have released specific COVID-19 prevention protocols just for daycare centers and preschools but so far Illinois has not.

CBS 2 Investigator Megan Hickey has more.

A Calumet City daycare isn’t taking any chances.

“Anybody that walks in through this green door has to wear a mask,” said Dolly Mansker

The day care is stepping up there sanitation protocols in the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak. Because owner Dolly Mansker says no one here can afford to get sick.

“They’d have to find another daycare,” said Mansker, owner of Mansker’s Loving Daycare. “My teachers would be in trouble because they wouldn’t get paid. I have to stay open for their sake.”

As it turns out, daycare centers are also crucial to the U.S. economy. A 2019 study found that the total economic impact is more than $99 billion a year. $47 billion in childcare revenue plus a $52 billion spillover in other industries because it allows parents to keep working.

That’s why states like California have issued specific guidelines for childcare and preschool settings, barring any kids, parents and teachers from visiting daycare centers within 14 days of possible travel-related exposure.

So far, the Illinois Department of Public Health has only published more general guidelines, recommending the same procedures for daycare centers as high schools.

Mansker and her team took it upon themselves to step up cleanings, hand washings and to ask outsiders to wear masks. She’s even purchasing cleaning products with the money coming out of her pocket.

“Yes, yes we have to we don’t get any extra money to buy cleaning. We just pay for it,” said Mansker, who added that until she gets more specific instructions, she has one goal in mind:

“(To) keep the virus from coming to this daycare.”

CBS 2 reached out to see if the Illinois Department of Public Health would be issuing more specific recommendations. So far no response. As for who would pay for additional cleaning, California’s Department of Public Health said its governor declared a state of emergency in the hopes of making additional funding available.

Megan Hickey