The most common Omicron symptoms in children have been identified.
OMICRON has caused an increase in babies being admitted to hospitals with Covid – but the majority of them only have a fever and runny nose.
According to data, 42% of child Covid patients are now under the age of one, up from 31% in previous waves of variants.
The tots are not getting sick, according to top doctors on the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage), and most are admitted as a precaution.
According to a Sage report, since December, babies under the age of one have accounted for the majority of childhood admissions.
However, there have only been 171 of them, with one out of every 55 requiring intensive care due to a high fever, according to a study.
It follows a string of highly positive studies that found Omicron is milder than other strains in vaccinated people, with the first official UK report revealing a 50 to 70% lower risk of hospitalization than Delta.
“These aren’t particularly sick infants,” said Professor Calum Semple, a Sage adviser and doctor at Alder Hey Children’s Hospital in Liverpool.
“They’re only here for a short time to conduct investigations.”
“I follow up on our most high-risk preterm babies,” Dr Camilla Kingdon, president of the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health, said.
“The vast majority of the patients in my clinic have had Omicron in the last four weeks – or their families have – and none of them have been harmed.”
“In fact, the majority of the mothers are complaining of a runny nose, being a little off their feet, and a low-grade fever.”
“We need to keep an eye on this, but the picture from around the country right now is reassuring.”
“The average length of stay was really low, and almost none of them needed oxygen or other help,” said Prof Russell Viner, who works at Great Ormond Street and is a professor at University College London.
“Around half of them received no treatment at all and were only admitted to the hospital for observation.”
“A number of them received antibiotics, but only as a result of the way we treat children with fevers, especially babies, which is to be extremely cautious and protective.”
Because babies are not tested on a regular basis, infection rates are difficult to track.
However, Covid is known to be extremely mild in young children, with an average of 29 daily hospital admissions in England for children under the age of five.
This is only a small portion of the 2,000 per day averaged across all age groups.
Baby admissions were higher in poorer areas, according to Sage experts.
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