More than a quarter of children in the UK suffer from conditions linked to the coronavirus outbreak, according to a new report from the Health Protection Agency.
A staggering 51% of children between six and 15 years old are diagnosed with at least one of the symptoms, according the report from a team of researchers led by Dr Kate O’Connell from the University of Sheffield and published today.
The UK’s top coronaviruses are SARS-CoV-2 and CRS-CoVR-2, with around a quarter (25%) of children with one or more of the three coronavirochic viruses being diagnosed with either one or both of them.
In the US, which has seen its worst pandemic yet, only 2% of US children have received an outbreak-related treatment, and fewer than one in 10 (9%) children aged seven to 15 are receiving the standard treatment of antiviral medication.
Dr O’Connor, who led the study, said: “The prevalence of severe conditions is alarming.
In fact, the researchers say the number of children who are diagnosed and treated for a coronaviral condition has more than doubled in the past year, with the number who are in hospital or receiving treatment in intensive care being three times higher than in 2015.”
This is particularly alarming given that the most common treatment for SARS is vaccination, which reduces the risk of disease.”
In fact, the researchers say the number of children who are diagnosed and treated for a coronaviral condition has more than doubled in the past year, with the number who are in hospital or receiving treatment in intensive care being three times higher than in 2015.
Dr Tom O’Sullivan, an expert in public health from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, said the study’s findings should prompt governments to “consider a strong public health response to these emerging epidemics”.
“The UK needs to look at what we can do to mitigate the effects of COVID to make sure our communities are protected, and also to ensure that children receive effective and timely vaccination,” he said.
“In particular, we need to consider how we can improve our vaccination rates for children who can’t or won’t get the standard antiviral treatment.”
Dr O. Sullivan also said that the findings suggest the UK’s coronavirecentive vaccination strategy, which started in the wake of the pandemic, needs to be reconsidered.
“What we need is a national approach, where the vaccination campaign and response is directed at children who cannot or won´t get the vaccine,” he told BBC News.
“This is where the UK has done very well.
The public health strategy has been very effective.
But the UK needs the reassurance that the UK will have a vaccine-ready population by 2020.”
There is an opportunity to have an effective and comprehensive strategy for the public health challenge ahead.