Kerala govt comes up with new guidelines for COVID treatment in newborns, children

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Kerala Health Minister Veena George
Kerala Health Minister Veena George

Thiruvananthapuram (Kerala) [India], June 3 (ANI): Kerala Health Minister Veena George on Thursday said the health department has prepared a COVID surge management plan and a COVID-19 treatment guideline for newborns and children in the state.

"COVID did not affect children much in the first and second wave of the pandemic. Less than 10 per cent of children were affected in both COVID waves. They are less likely to be affected by the third wave too. However, there are concerns raised from different parts of the world that children could be prone to Covid. One reason is that children are currently not vaccinated. It is in this context that the Surge Plan and Medical Guidelines for the treatment of newborns and children have been prepared, " the minister said.

Detailing on the plan, Veena George said that the treatment for children is divided into three categories: mild, moderate and severe.

"The vast majority of children are at risk of developing mild illness if they are infected with covid. Children with mild symptoms should be treated at home after consulting a paediatrician. Children with moderate symptoms will be treated at the taluk, district, general hospitals and medical colleges depending on the severity of the disease," she said.

"Those with severe symptoms will be treated at the Territorial Care Hospital and Medical College with facilities to provide oxygen. Facilities have been set up in hospitals to treat such children. More equipment and systems will be prepared as the number of patients increases," the minister said.

The new COVID surge management plan also includes facilities and treatment guidelines for the treatment of post-covid problems, which are rare in children. Guidelines for follow-up treatment of these children after treatment are also provided.

"There is no evidence COVID transmits from pregnant mother to child. There is also no evidence of transmission of the disease from breast milk. Therefore, mothers can breastfeed. It is possible for the baby to be infected only through the air. Therefore, the mother should wear an N95 mask while breastfeeding," she added.

According to the Union Health Ministry, Kerala has 1,92,568 active COVID-19 cases. The total number of recoveries has reached 23,64,210 and fatalities have mounted to 9,222. (ANI)