COVID-19: Information for parents of immunocompromised children and children with chronic medical conditionsCCOVID-19: Information for parents of immunocompromised children and children with chronic medical conditionsCOVID-19: Information for parents of immunocompromised children and children with chronic medical conditionsEnglishInfectious DiseasesChild (0-12 years);Teen (13-18 years)NAImmune systemConditions and diseasesAdult (19+) CaregiversFever;Cough;Runny nose2020-03-18T04:00:00Z10.000000000000051.1000000000000798.000000000000Flat ContentHealth A-Z<p>Children who are immunocompromised and children with chronic medical conditions may be at higher risk of complications from the novel coronavirus COVID-19.</p><p>Children who are immunocompromised and children with chronic medical conditions may be at higher risk of complications from the novel coronavirus COVID-19. The following questions and answers may help you during this outbreak.</p> <h2>Key points</h2><ul><li>SickKids is safe for you and your child to come to for assessment as directed by your primary care team.</li><li>Children who are immunocompromised and children with chronic medical conditions may be at higher risk of developing complications if they do get COVID-19.</li><li>Washing your hands frequently using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer, or by using soap and water for 20 seconds will help to prevent you from getting COVID-19.</li><li>Your child should continue to take their regular medications as prescribed by their primary care team unless specifically instructed otherwise.</li></ul>

 

 

 

 

COVID-19: Information for parents of immunocompromised children and children with chronic medical conditions3863.00000000000COVID-19: Information for parents of immunocompromised children and children with chronic medical conditionsCOVID-19: Information for parents of immunocompromised children and children with chronic medical conditionsCEnglishInfectious DiseasesChild (0-12 years);Teen (13-18 years)NAImmune systemConditions and diseasesAdult (19+) CaregiversFever;Cough;Runny nose2020-03-18T04:00:00Z10.000000000000051.1000000000000798.000000000000Flat ContentHealth A-Z<p>Children who are immunocompromised and children with chronic medical conditions may be at higher risk of complications from the novel coronavirus COVID-19.</p><p>Children who are immunocompromised and children with chronic medical conditions may be at higher risk of complications from the novel coronavirus COVID-19. The following questions and answers may help you during this outbreak.</p> <h2>Key points</h2><ul><li>SickKids is safe for you and your child to come to for assessment as directed by your primary care team.</li><li>Children who are immunocompromised and children with chronic medical conditions may be at higher risk of developing complications if they do get COVID-19.</li><li>Washing your hands frequently using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer, or by using soap and water for 20 seconds will help to prevent you from getting COVID-19.</li><li>Your child should continue to take their regular medications as prescribed by their primary care team unless specifically instructed otherwise.</li></ul> <h2>What is novel coronavirus (COVID-19)?</h2><p>A new or novel strain of coronavirus was identified in late 2019, and has now spread across the globe. The World Health Organization has named this novel coronavirus COVID-19 and has declared the outbreak a pandemic.</p><h2>Is my child immunocompromised?</h2><p>Immunocompromised children have weak immune systems. A weak immune system could be caused by many different medical conditions or medications. Some examples include children who have:</p><ul><li>had a solid organ transplant (i.e. heart, kidney, lung, liver, intestinal)</li><li>had a bone marrow transplant</li><li>cancer</li><li>congenital or primary immunodeficiency</li><li>HIV/AIDS</li><li>rheumatological disease</li><li>gastrointestinal disease</li><li>severe burns</li></ul><p>And those who are:</p><ul><li>taking selective immunomodulators (i.e. anti-TNF agents, azathioprine, MMF and all immunosuppressive agents).</li><li>taking long-term steroid therapy</li><li>in a severely malnourished state</li></ul><p>If you are unsure if your child is immunocompromised, please check with your primary care team at the hospital.</p><h2>Is my child at higher risk of getting COVID-19?</h2><p>There is still a lot being learned about COVID-19. At this time, serious illness in children appears to be less common than it is in adults. It is not yet clear whether children with underlying or chronic medical conditions are at greater risk of being infected with COVID-19, or of serious illness if they get the infection. Based on what is known about the influenza virus, it would not be unexpected for immunocompromised children, or children with an underlying chronic medical condition (i.e. chronic lung disease) to be at increased risk of complications from a COVID-19 infection.</p><h2>How do I know if my child has COVID-19?</h2><p>Your child may have COVID-19 if they have some or all of the following symptoms:</p><ul><li> <a href="https://www.aboutkidshealth.ca/Article?contentid=30&language=English">fever</a></li><li> <a href="https://www.aboutkidshealth.ca/Article?contentid=774&language=English">cough</a> or sneezing</li><li> <a href="https://www.aboutkidshealth.ca/Article?contentid=748&language=English">sore throat</a></li><li>difficulty breathing or fast breathing</li><li>body aches</li><li> <a href="https://www.aboutkidshealth.ca/Article?contentid=29&language=English">headache</a></li><li>chills</li><li>fatigue</li><li> <a href="https://www.aboutkidshealth.ca/Article?contentid=7&language=English">diarrhea</a> and <a href="https://www.aboutkidshealth.ca/Article?contentid=746&language=English">vomiting</a></li><li>runny or stuffy nose that progresses to one of the above symptoms</li></ul><p>While fever may be the main symptom in immunocompromised children, not all children with COVID-19 will have a fever. For children who have a runny or stuffy nose you should be most concerned about a possible COVID-19 infection if other symptoms develop. It is not yet known if immunocompromised children with a COVID-19 infection have different symptoms.</p><h2>Should I come to the hospital if I think my child has COVID-19?</h2><p>If your child has symptoms of COVID-19 contact your primary care team at the hospital before coming. They will help you determine if your child needs to be seen and where you should go.</p><p>You should come to the hospital right away if your child has the following symptoms:</p><ul><li>fast breathing or trouble breathing</li><li>bluish skin color</li><li>not drinking enough fluids</li><li>not waking up or not interacting</li><li>being so irritable that the child does not want to be held<br></li></ul><p>In an emergency please call an ambulance and tell the emergency services team that you are concerned your child may have a COVID-19 infection.</p><h2>Is testing for COVID-19 available at SickKids?</h2><p>Yes, testing is available at SickKids for children with weakened immune system that have concerning symptoms, such as fever and cough. Testing is usually done with a nose swab to try to identify various viruses. These swabs now test for COVID-19 as well.</p><h2>If my child is diagnosed with COVID-19, how long will they be sick?</h2><p>There is still a lot to be learned about COVID-19. Children with weakened immune systems may be sick for a longer period of time than other children. How long will vary from child to child.</p><h2>Should my child avoid public places such as shopping malls, public transit and playgrounds?</h2><p>At this time, it is recommended that social distancing including avoiding crowded environments is appropriate, in keeping with current public health recommendations. In crowded situations that cannot be avoided, extra precautions should be taken such as frequent handwashing. If you have alcohol-based hand sanitizer carry it with you to use when soap and water are not available. At this point, firm recommendations regarding summer camps cannot be made, however such camps will likely be cancelled if the outbreak continues unabated.</p><h2>What are effective measures to prevent COVID-19 spread?</h2><ul><li>Like other respiratory viruses, including influenza, it is recommended that you wash your hands frequently by using alcohol-based hand sanitizer, or by using soap and water for 20 seconds.</li><li>Limit touching your face, nose and eyes.<br></li><li>Avoid close contact with people who have a fever or cough.</li><li>Practice cough etiquette by keeping a distance from other people, coughing and sneezing into your sleeve or a tissue or a respiratory mask, and practicing frequent hand washing.</li></ul><h2>Are there any extra precautions that my child or I should be taking?</h2><p>Encourage your child to wash or sanitize their hands frequently. For example, if they are in school, you can provide older children with a bottle of alcohol-based hand sanitizer. Hand sanitizer can be dangerous if swallowed. Be careful to keep it away from young children. Avoid having your child be in close contact with anyone who has symptoms of COVID-19. Be vigilant for signs of infection in your child.</p><h2>Should my child wear a face mask when in public?</h2><ul><li>There is no current evidence that wearing a mask in public spaces will help your child to avoid infection from COVID-19. Other measures, such as careful hand washing and social distancing have been demonstrated to be effective in reducing transmission of the infection. However, you and your child may consider wearing a face covering (sucha as a cloth mask or bandana) in public spaces if physical distancing is not possible.</li><li>If your child has respiratory symptoms (i.e. fever, cough) and they are at the hospital for assessment, it is important that they wear a mask to avoid spreading infection to others. If you do not have a mask for this purpose you should ask for one when you arrive at the hospital.</li><li>Your primary care team may also advise your child to wear a mask for other reasons and you should follow this advice.</li></ul><h2>Should my child continue on their immunosuppressive medications?</h2><p>Your child should continue to take their regular medications as prescribed, unless directed differently by your primary care team at the hospital. Make sure you have enough medication and supplies on hand to last for 30 days, in case you need to stay home for a prolonged period of time.</p><h2>Should we cancel our upcoming trip or vacation?</h2><p>Yes. At this time, it is recommended that any upcoming trips or vacations be cancelled until further notice.</p><h2>Can my child go to school?</h2><p>Please follow the guidance from the Ontario Ministry of Education and your child’s local school regarding mandatory school closure. If your child has any signs or symptoms of COVID-19 do not send them to school even if their school remains open.</p><h2>What should I do if I am unwell myself, or my child’s sibling becomes unwell with symptoms of COVID-19 infection?</h2><p>Contact your family doctor or paediatrician as it is recommended that unwell siblings or parents of children who are immunocompromised be tested for COVID-19. It is also advised that you practice social distancing at home as much as possible. You can also refer to Ontario general guidelines of who should be tested for COVID-19 and ways of accessing testing at <a href="https://www.ontario.ca/page/2019-novel-coronavirus">https://www.ontario.ca/page/2019-novel-coronavirus</a>.</p><h2>What should I do if a member of my household has recently returned from travel outside of Canada?</h2><p>People returning from travel outside of Canada should self-isolate for 14 days, in keeping with current public health recommendations. During that time period your child should avoid close contact with this person as much as possible.</p><h2>Should I or my teen who is immunocompromised go to work?</h2><p>Follow public heath guidelines and practice social distancing when appropriate. This may include avoiding work environments that involve contact with large groups of people. It is recommended that you or your teen who is immunocompromised try to work from home as much as possible.</p><h2>If my child requires assessment for symptoms other than COVID-19 infection what should we do?</h2><p>Continue to follow the recommendations for getting your child assessed according to your primary care team’s instructions, as you would do normally. For example, if your child is on medication that causes them to have a low white blood cell count and they develop a fever, you should still go to the hospital for assessment and let the primary care team know about your child’s symptoms as per normal procedure.</p><h2>Should I reschedule my upcoming routine appointment?</h2><p>Clinic appointments are being reviewed and many upcoming visits may be rescheduled or moved to virtual care by video or telephone, if possible. Medically necessary appointments will continue. Please contact your primary care team at the hospital for questions regarding your upcoming appointments.</p><h2>What if the province orders a lockdown and mandates people staying in their homes? Will we be able to get to the hospital?</h2><p>Even in those countries that have ordered lockdowns, people have still been able to travel for medically necessary reasons.</p><h2>Is it safe for my child to come to SickKids during the current outbreak?</h2><p>Yes, the hospital is safe for you and your child to go to for assessment as directed by your primary care team. At all times SickKids has clear procedures in place for protecting your child from getting an infection when visiting the hospital. During this time additional measures to protect you and your child have been put in place. Please follow SickKids instruction regarding the number of visitors permitted to accompany your child. Please see <a href="https://www.sickkids.ca/coronavirus"> https://www.sickkids.ca/coronavirus</a> for further information.</p>https://assets.aboutkidshealth.ca/AKHAssets/COVID-19--Information_for_parents.jpgCOVID-19: Information for parents of immunocompromised children and children with chronic medical conditionsFalseCOVID-19: Information for parents