COVID guidelines for children being developed as probe into deaths continue

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The Ministry of Health will be developing guidelines for parents to use so that they can bring their children to hospitals in a timely manner if they are experiencing the more severe or life-threatening symptoms of COVID-19.

In January, several children died after they were infected with COVID-19, with three children succumbing before they were even able to receive any hospital treatment. Since then, a probe has been ordered.

During his COVID-19 update on Thursday, Health Minister Dr. Frank Anthony said those investigations continue. A three-member team of health officials, the minister said, have been reviewing the children’s symptoms based on their patient charts.

“These cases we’ve undertaken to investigate them because we want to prevent this from happening again,” Dr. Anthony said.

He, however, opined that the children’s caretakers may not have realised that their children had been experiencing serious symptoms of COVID-19. This may be a possible explanation for why the children died before even arriving at the hospital.

Resultantly, the Health Minister said that the ministry is seeking to develop guidelines for parents to use to determine when their children need treatment for a COVID infection.

“We would be publishing guidelines to ensure that parents can ensure when their children have COVID, they can come in a timely manner,” he said.

Meanwhile, Dr. Anthony also highlighted that the ministry is still seeking to secure vaccines for children aged five to 11 years old. Securing these vaccines has been delayed by months because of supply challenges.

With United Stated drug regulators also examining whether the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccines can be given to younger children- from six months to five years, Dr. Anthony said Guyanese authorities may consider this too.

In the meantime, he said that all people eligible for COVID-19 vaccines, that is each individual aged 12 years and old, should get their vaccines. These vaccines, he explained, will protect people from experiencing the more severe or life-threatening symptoms of COVID-19.

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