Jul 24 , 2021
The world isn't new to diseases and infections, but when coronavirus or COVID-19 spread from one region to another, it shook not only one nation but also the world. Even after over a year of its existence, the infection originating in Wuhan, China, keeps changing its course and adds more people to its attacking list.
From the elderly to the young, the virus is now affecting the children, the earlier thought to be safe group. Though some companies have developed the vaccination for kids, it is still for a restricted age group, and not all countries have access to it.
Thus, here we have for you a synopsis of the guidelines issued by the Indian Government on COVID-19 in children-
• Infection Severity
As per the guideline, you may give paracetamol 10- every 4-6 hours for fever and a throat comforter for a mild infection. If the child is old enough, get them to do warm saline gargles.
• On Remdesivir
Popularly used in adult treatment, this antiviral medication is not recommended in children. So, please stay away from it.
• On Steroids
Steroids are only recommended to children at the right time, in the correct dose and for the right duration. It is only for those hospitalised with moderately severe and critically ill COVID-19 cases and under strict supervision. So, please don't give steroids to kids being treated at home and are without the surveillance of a consulting doctor.
• CT Scan
CT scan can be done, but it should be highly selective as the treatment decisions do not get much affected.
• Six-minute walk tests
This test assesses the cardio-pulmonary exercise tolerance and is used to uncover hypoxia, a condition that determines the absence of enough oxygen in the tissues to sustain bodily functions.
The walk test is suggested for children above 12 years under the supervision of parents/guardians. Attach the pulse oximeter to their finger before the walk and keep a check on any drop in saturation. If there is no drop, then repeat the walk test every 6 to 8 hours.
But, if there is any drop in saturation < 94%, or absolute drop of more than 3–5% or feeling unwell (lightheaded, short of breath), admit the child to a hospital for observation and, in severe cases, for oxygen requirement. Uncontrolled asthma patients should avoid this test.
So, keep the child safe and inside as much as possible. However, in case required, follow the above Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS) recommended guidelines only.