Fortunately, current information suggests that children are unlikely to become severely ill with the coronavirus (COVID-19). However, children with certain underlying conditions may be at higher risk, specifically those children with problems that impact the heart or lungs or ability to fight infection. Examples of conditions include:
- Cancer treatment
- Chronic lung disease
- Heart disease
- Immunodeficiency conditions
- Neurologic conditions (including muscle disorders)
- Organ transplant
- Treatment with medications that lower the immune system
Below are general recommendations for all families:
We do NOT recommend stopping any long-term medications because maintaining good control of underlying conditions is one of the best strategies to avoid more severe coronavirus. Avoiding flares of underlying disease will help prevent unnecessary trips to the hospital, where ill patients are likely to be seeking care. It is a good idea to make sure you have refilled your child's prescriptions and have at least a two-week supply of medications on hand.
Routine clinic visits
To maximize social distancing and adhere to the Safer at Home orders, as well as keep our families safe, many non-urgent appointments at Children’s Colorado are being postponed or converted to telehealth visits. Learn more about how we've temporarily closed select locations to help reduce the spread of the coronavirus in our community.
In Colorado, schools (preschool through 12th grade) are closed through the end of the 2019-2020 regular school year in compliance with directives from the governor, who is assessing community risk of the coronavirus.
Colorado’s Safer at Home order asks people to limit essential travel to within their county of residence or employment as much as possible. It also limits recreational travel to no further than 10 miles from home. Staying at home is the best way to protect your child and family from getting sick.
With Colorado’s Safer at Home order effective April 27, the Governor states that we must continue to practice social distancing and implement precautionary other measures. This includes limiting social interactions, taking extra precautions for vulnerable individuals and wearing face coverings while in public.
In addition, we recommend that families:
- Avoid contact with people who are sick.
- Avoid crowds as much as possible.
- Wash hands often or use hand sanitizer.
- Avoid touching your face, nose, mouth or eyes as much as possible.
- If you provide care for your child that involve contact with the head and neck, wash hands thoroughly before providing care.
- Clean and disinfect surfaces.
The outbreak could last for a long time. Public health measures, such as Safer at Home, are intended to reduce likelihood of person-to-person contact.
Staying at home is the safest option to avoid exposure, so ensure you have sufficient stock of prescription medications, over-the-counter medications, medical supplies, household items and groceries. Please note that hoarding is not advised, as it affects the supply chain and limits other people from getting essential items.
If your child has symptoms of a cold or fever but it is not an emergency, call your primary care provider or your care team at Children's Colorado to get advice. Remember that other respiratory viruses that are not the coronavirus are still making children ill in the community, and are still common causes of fever and respiratory symptoms.
The good news is that most patients with the coronavirus are not sick enough to require hospitalization or an emergency department visit, and their symptoms can be managed at home. We would prefer to keep your child away from the hospital unless there is a medical emergency.
Families with children who have special considerations when they get a fever (such as children with a central line or those undergoing treatment for cancer) should continue to handle fever as they would under normal circumstances.