LifeBridge Health

COVID-19: Should children skip back-to-school checkups and vaccinations this year?

31-Jul-2020 2:00 PM EDT, by LifeBridge Health contact patient services

Newswise — Even if your child will be doing virtual learning in the fall, annual checkups and vaccinations he or she would normally get around back-to-school time should not be deferred.

“Why is the checkup so important this year? First, many children are having trouble coping with the new reality we live in. Your child’s physician can screen for mental health issues and make appropriate referrals or treatment recommendations as needed,” says Scott Krugman, M.D., M.S., FAAP, vice chair of the Department of Pediatrics at The Herman & Walter Samuelson Children’s Hospital at Sinai. “Second, even if schools aren’t in person, every child needs to be up to date on their immunizations.”

A flu shot will be especially important this fall, as it will probably be difficult for physicians to distinguish between COVID-19 and influenza. “So, reducing the risk of getting influenza will help everyone,” Krugman says.

Some of the things LifeBridge Health pediatricians are doing to protect patients (and which you can ask your healthcare provider about) are:

  • ensuring a clean environment by disinfecting each room after every visit
  • eliminating the use of waiting rooms
  • requiring patients, family and staff to wear masks at all times
  • requiring staff to wear proper personal protective equipment (PPE) during procedures
  • arranging telehealth appointments (secure video visits or extended phone chats)
  • drive-thru vaccinations

“Pediatricians continue to urge families to keep their children up to date on vaccines and checkups” says Dana Silver, M.D., FAAP, FABM, director of Greenspring Pediatric Associates and a pediatrician at the Samuelson Children’s Hospital. “They are adjusting schedules to use telehealth services where appropriate. But many children still need to be seen in the office for vaccines. To that matter, pediatricians are limiting or eliminating use of waiting rooms, socially distancing and increasing cleaning measures.”

Silver adds: “The last thing we need is an outbreak of vaccine-preventable diseases in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic.”

In addition to the flu shot, a measles vaccine is also encouraged, says Susan V. Lipton, M.D., MPH, chief of pediatric infectious diseases at Sinai Hospital of Baltimore. “Both influenza and measles drop immunity, particularly immune memory and cell-mediated response, for a good six weeks following infection, and we have no idea what will happen with co-infection or sequential infection with COVID-19,” Lipton says.

“Also,” Lipton adds, “measles can look very much like Multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C) and Kawasaki (disease) with fever, rash, conjunctivitis and will make it harder to sort out.”

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention [CDC] has said that while the cause of MIS-C, a condition where different body parts can become inflamed, is not known, many children with the condition either had the virus that causes COVID-19 or had been around someone with COVID-19. In addition to fever and rash, symptoms of MIS-C can include abdominal pain, vomiting, diarrhea, neck pain, bloodshot eyes, and fatigue.

Kawasaki disease is an acute febrile illness of unknown etiology that primarily affects children younger than 5 years of age, with clinical signs including: fever; rash; swelling of the hands and feet; irritation and redness of the whites of the eyes; swollen lymph glands in the neck; and irritation and inflammation of the mouth, lips and throat.

Contact your healthcare provider right away if your child is showing symptoms of either of these conditions.

As always, continue to:

  • wash your hands often (with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, or use a hand sanitizer containing at least 60% alcohol)
  • avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands
  • avoid close contact with people who are sick
  • put at least six feet of distance between yourself and people who don’t live in your household
  • cover your mouth and nose with a mask or cloth face cover

Visit or call 410-601-WELL to learn more about our services at LifeBridge Health and scheduling an appointment.

Filters close

Showing results

110 of 2927
Released: 14-Aug-2020 4:55 PM EDT
Managing your child’s diabetes during COVID-19
University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston

These days it’s hard not to worry about whether a quick outing to the grocery store will result in catching COVID-19. But for parents with children who have preexisting health conditions such as diabetes, it can be especially hard not to worry about whether their child is at a higher risk of becoming severely ill from the virus.

Newswise: 1200x800?cb=1597350935
Released: 14-Aug-2020 3:35 PM EDT
Gaiters do no harm: WVU toxicologists find coverings help contain the spread of exhaled droplets
West Virginia University

Experts with the West Virginia University Center for Inhalation Toxicology found that – assuming it’s a good fit - a gaiter will, despite recent reports, provide a respiratory containment of exhaled droplets comparable to a common over-the-ear cloth mask.

Newswise: AI software enables real-time 3D printing quality assessment
Released: 14-Aug-2020 3:05 PM EDT
AI software enables real-time 3D printing quality assessment
Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Oak Ridge National Laboratory researchers have developed artificial intelligence software for powder bed 3D printers that assesses the quality of parts in real time, without the need for expensive characterization equipment.

Newswise: Is the COVID-19 virus pathogenic because it depletes specific host microRNAs?
Released: 14-Aug-2020 3:05 PM EDT
Is the COVID-19 virus pathogenic because it depletes specific host microRNAs?
University of Alabama at Birmingham

Why is the COVID-19 virus deadly, compared to cold-causing coronaviruses? Analysis current literature and bioinformatic study of seven coronaviruses, suggests that SARS-CoV-2 acts as a microRNA “sponge,” leading to better viral replication and blockage of the host immune response.

Released: 14-Aug-2020 2:30 PM EDT
UW team developing model to help lower COVID-19 infections in Seattle, other major cities
University of Washington

A UW team has received a grant to develop a model that uses local data to generate policy recommendations that could help lower COVID-19 infections in King County, which includes Seattle.

Newswise: Cardiovascular risk factors tied to COVID-19 complications and death
12-Aug-2020 7:05 PM EDT
Cardiovascular risk factors tied to COVID-19 complications and death

COVID-19 patients with cardiovascular comorbidities or risk factors are more likely to develop cardiovascular complications while hospitalized, and more likely to die from COVID-19 infection, according to a new study published August 14, 2020 in the open-access journal PLOS ONE by Jolanda Sabatino of Universita degli Studi Magna Graecia di Catanzaro, Italy, and colleagues.

Newswise: Study shows frequently used serology test may not detect antibodies that could confirm protection against reinfection of COVID-19
Released: 14-Aug-2020 1:55 PM EDT
Study shows frequently used serology test may not detect antibodies that could confirm protection against reinfection of COVID-19
University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center

Two different types of detectable antibody responses in SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) tell very different stories and may indicate ways to enhance public health efforts against the disease, according to researchers at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. Antibodies to the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein receptor binding domain (S-RBD) are speculated to neutralize virus infection, while the SARS-CoV-2 nucleocapsid protein (N-protein) antibody may often only indicate exposure to the virus, not protections against reinfection.

Released: 14-Aug-2020 1:50 PM EDT
USC scientists identify the order of COVID-19's symptoms
University of Southern California (USC)

USC researchers have found the likely order in which COVID-19 symptoms first appear: fever, cough, muscle pain, and then nausea, and/or vomiting, and diarrhea.

Released: 14-Aug-2020 1:45 PM EDT
Stay the Course with Personal Finances during Pandemic, Johns Hopkins Expert Advises
Johns Hopkins University Carey Business School

Keeping on a careful and steady path is the wisest approach to personal money management during the uncertainties of the COVID-19 crisis, says Associate Professor Yuval Bar-Or of the Johns Hopkins Carey Business School.

access_time Embargo lifts in 2 days
Embargo will expire: 17-Aug-2020 11:00 AM EDT Released to reporters: 14-Aug-2020 1:25 PM EDT

A reporter's PressPass is required to access this story until the embargo expires on 17-Aug-2020 11:00 AM EDT The Newswise PressPass gives verified journalists access to embargoed stories. Please log in to complete a presspass application. If you have not yet registered, please Register. When you fill out the registration form, please identify yourself as a reporter in order to advance to the presspass application form.

Showing results

110 of 2927