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What some of the best pediatricians recommend regarding the delta variant and children

2021-07-22T03:41:51.465Z

"This is here to stay, and if we discover how to live in a safe way and, at the same time, not too restrictive for our children, we will limit the collateral damage that children have been suffering," explains one of the experts consulted. These are their suggestions for the summer and back to school.



By Daniella Silva - NBC News

A nationwide surge in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations, fueled by the highly contagious delta variant, which now accounts for the vast majority of infections in the country, has many worrying about the smallest as the sanitary restrictions are lifted.

Parents of children under the age of 12 who are not yet eligible for coronavirus vaccines are wondering

what the delta variant means for their families

.

The delta variant now accounts for more than 83% of COVID-19 cases, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) warned Tuesday.

Just a month ago, the variant accounted for just over 30% of new cases.

Children play on the South Plate River in Denver, Colorado, on June 14, 2021.

On Monday, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommended that all children over the age of 2 wear masks when returning to school this year, regardless of whether they have been vaccinated or not.

That contradicted the CDC's previous guideline, which stated that fully inoculated students did not need to use them.

COVID-19 vaccines have been licensed only for people 12 years of age and older.

As parents have been preparing for summer camps, vacations, and the upcoming school year,

families are concerned about how safe the plans they have made for their children are

.

Are people vaccinated against COVID-19 delta variant protected?

An expert explains

July 12, 202103: 37

Here's what top pediatricians had to say about what families should know about the delta variant and children.

What steps can I take to protect my family?

The emergency use authorization for the vaccines for children under the age of 12 is likely to arrive in mid-winter, an official with the Food and Drug Administration announced.

Dr. Jim Versalovic, chief pathologist and acting chief pediatrician at Texas Children's Hospital, said in an interview with our sister network NBC News that

"this variant is spreading like wildfire

. That means we have to be very careful with those who don't are vaccinated and with those who are partially vaccinated. We are very concerned about children under 12 who do not have access to the vaccine at this time. "

Versalovic added that doctors had seen a "very dramatic change" in the past two to three weeks, where

delta is

now

"by far the most dominant variant" among children

.

Elementary students wear the mask at a school in Chula Vista, California, on July 21, 2021.AP

Dr. Jennifer Lighter, a pediatric infectious disease specialist at New York University, explained that the delta variant, while "certainly more contagious,"

does not appear to be more dangerous to children than other variants

.

As of Thursday, more than 4 million children had been diagnosed with COVID-19, about 14.2% of all cases, according to the AAP.

Versalovic also said that "we do not have conclusive evidence that the severity of the disease in children and adolescents is different with the delta variant."

Dr. Michael Green, pediatric infectious disease specialist and medical director of infection prevention at UPMC Children's Hospital in Pittsburgh, said getting vaccinated is "the single most important thing parents can do to protect their children" from contracting the coronavirus. including the delta variant.

Parents should also consider encouraging other family members to get vaccinated, he added.

What do the experts say about the in-person classes?

The AAP, which has spoken about the importance of getting children back to learning in person this year, recommends that school personnel wear masks.

[Vaccines protect against the dangerous delta variant of COVID-19.

But it takes both doses]

The CDC and the AAP recommend face-to-face learning, even if they differ in their recommendations for wearing masks in institutes.

Some states have prohibited districts from requiring masks in schools.

Local governments and school districts have the authority to make their own decisions about its use, even for unvaccinated students.

Versalovic assured that although the issue of the use of masks has been politicized, "it is certainly important to use them in schools, in addition to disinfecting surfaces and washing hands well."

What about summer camps, should my kids go?

Medical experts assured that it is important that parents are informed about health guidelines that summer camps follow, as well as the measures they take in general to protect children.

[COVID-19 outbreaks in summer camps worry, will the same happen in schools?]

Lighter recommended that parents find out if the camp follows sanitary protocols, what COVID-19 exams or tests it is doing, what its policy is regarding wearing a mask indoors and outdoors, and if its staff have been vaccinated.

Camps where staff members are vaccinated and those that encourage the use of masks indoors reduce the risk for children who are not vaccinated, he noted.

The AAP has also recommended that children wear face masks for indoor activities at summer camps.

Is there danger if I travel by plane?

Families planning to go on vacation or want to visit relatives may wonder how the delta variant affects their travel plans over a longer distance.

"If anyone is lying here, it is you": this is how Dr. Anthony Fauci responded to another attack by Senator Rand Paul

July 20, 202100: 39

Dr. Richard Malley, an infectious disease pediatrician at Boston Children's Hospital, explained that so far air travel itself has not been a major source of coronavirus transmission.

Masks are required on airplanes and terminals, whether traveling within the United States or abroad.

According to Malley, the fact that all users wear at least one mask reduces the risk of transmission considerably.

But he warns that although traveling by plane may not be as risky as you think, the destination to which you travel is decisive.

"So if you go to a place where there is a lot of viruses, that may not be the best place to take your child," she said.

Let them play with other children?

With the lifting of pandemic restrictions, families have tried to return to their social lives in a safe manner.

Among other things they must navigate when their children can play with other children, when they do not always know if the people around them have already been vaccinated.

A high school student receives her first COVID-19 injection in Georgia on May 12, 2021.

 Malley said it's reasonable to ask other parents beforehand if they or the people the children will interact with at home are vaccinated.

"I think parents and individuals should feel more comfortable asking these kinds of questions," he added.

It's also important to Versalovic to make sure play dates are outdoors whenever possible, in uncrowded settings, and in small groups where it's easy for parents to keep their distance.

It is very likely that

"we are going to be dealing with this for a long time,"

Malley said, although he clarified that the intensity would probably be lower than last year when the pandemic began.

"This is here to stay, and if we figure out how to live safely and at the same time not too restrictive for our children, we will limit the collateral damage that children have been suffering," the expert added.

Source: telemundo

All news articles on 2021-07-22

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