Singapore reported 75 new COVID-19 patients on Saturday (4 April), the Ministry of Health (MOH) announced.
Among the new cases are two children, aged 7 and 9, who are linked to two previous cases—both of whom have yet to be linked.
About the 7-year-old & 9-year-old COVID-19 patients
The 9-year-old, case 1123, is a female Singapore permanent resident who has no recent travel history abroad. She is a family member of case 884.
The female child tested positive for COVID-19 infection on Friday (3 April), while case 884 tested positive for the virus on Monday (30 March).
Meanwhile, the 7-year-old patient identified as case 1136, is a male Singapore citizen. He is a family member of case 850.
The boy tested positive for the virus infection on Friday (3 April), while his family member was confirmed to have contracted the virus last Sunday (29 March).
KK Women’s And Children’s Hospital | Source: Wikimedia Commons
Both children are warded at KK Women’s and Children’s Hospital (KKH) where most young COVID-19 patients are hospitalised.
Though both cases have been linked to family members who were earlier confirmed to have contracted the virus, both of those cases have yet to be linked. Contact tracing is ongoing.
How are young children with COVID-19 being cared for?
The recent rising number of infants and young children contracting COVID-19 in Singapore and around the world, many are wondering how are they being cared for especially when their parents also be in isolation be it at home or in another hospital.
Case in point, both family members of cases 1123 and 1136 are warded in different hospitals from them: one in Singapore General Hospital and one in Changi General Hospital.
In response to this query published on news website Today Online, KKH’s chief operating officer Alson Goh, said the hospital has “allowed a designated caregiver to stay with a child throughout his or her time in the isolation room or ward.”
“But as a precaution, the accompanying caregiver will not be able to leave or swap places with another caregiver,” Mr Goh said.
“Hospitalisation is a stressful experience, especially for children. Other than providing the necessary medical treatment and care, KKH has a child life team, which has prepared activities such as colouring, arts and crafts, as well as plastic construction toys donated by generous sponsors,” Mr Goh added.
KKH is Singapore’s tertiary referral centre for the medical care of children, and we are acutely aware of the effects of hospitalisation on children and their families. As COVID-19 also infects children, KKH has been on the frontline of screening and treating paediatric patients who are suspected or confirmed to have contracted the virus.