Coronavirus UK cases: Children infected with COVID-19 on the rise – symptoms to spot

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The reopening of schools across the UK gave many a sigh of relief with the hope that things have finally returned to normal. However, with the threat of a second lockdown looming and the number of coronavirus cases among secondary school-aged children on the rise, it seems the end is still a while away. What are the symptoms to spot?

NHS England data shows 1,239 cases when those aged 18 and under were logged with possible Covid-19 symptoms in the NHS Milton Keynes CCG area in September, which was nine times more than in August.

It was the second-highest monthly total recorded for children, behind only the 1,268 who reported symptoms in March when the outbreak began.

In September, the majority (68 percent) of reports for children were done through NHS 111 online assessments, with the remaining 32 percent were over the phone.

Across England, the number of children being reported with symptoms rose from just 21,000 in August to 186,000 in September.

READ MORE: The hidden signs of long COVID that can last for months

Coronavirus UK cases: Children infected with COVID-19 on the rise – symptoms to spot

Coronavirus UK cases: Reports in cases of children infected with COVID-19 on the rise (Image: Getty Images)

“Children remain relatively unaffected by COVID – but there is no choice but to test on symptoms as otherwise cases will be missed,” said professor of paediatric immunology and infectious diseases at the University of Southampton, Saul Faust.

He continued: “Parents are not overanxious – they are asking for tests per national guidance.

“The problem and solution have not changed since the start of the pandemic – we need a testing system, and track and trace alongside it, that has capacity and is effective.”

DON’T MISS

In a study published in BMJ, the clinical characteristics of children and young people admitted to hospital with COVID-19 in the UK was investigated.

The study noted: “To characterise the clinical features of children and young people admitted to hospital with laboratory confirmed severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus infection in the UK and explore factors associated with admission to critical care, mortality, and development of multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children and adolescents temporarily related to coronavirus disease 2019.

“651 children and young people aged less than 19 years admitted to 138 hospitals and enrolled into the International Severe Acute Respiratory and emergency Infections Consortium (ISARIC) WHO Clinical Characterisation Protocol UK study with laboratory confirmed SARS-CoV-2.”

The study found that children and young people have less severe acute covid-19 than adults.

Coronavirus UK cases: Children infected with COVID-19 on the rise – symptoms to spot

Coronavirus UK cases: High temperature, cough and loss of smell and taste are symptoms to spot (Image: Getty Images)

Symptoms to spot in children

The main symptoms of coronavirus are:

A high temperature
A new, continuous cough – this means coughing a lot, for more than an hour, or three or more coughing episodes in 24 hours
A loss or change to sense of smell or taste – this means they cannot smell or taste anything, or things smell or taste different to normal

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) estimates that across England, 116,600 cases had coronavirus in the week studied, from 18 to 24 September, up from 103,600 in the week before.

Those figures equate to about 8,400 new cases a day and about one in 500 infected.

In its previous report, issued last week, the ONS estimated that in mid-September there were about 9,600 new infection cases per day in England.

The figures suggest that while infections are still rising, the rate of growth may have slowed, though the ONS stressed that without more data it could not confirm this.


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