Parents, carers and guardians in Lancashire and South Cumbria are being encouraged not to delay seeking medical help for children or young people who need it.
Local health organisations want to reassure people that NHS services are taking steps to minimise the risk of COVID-19 and keep patients and staff safe amid concerns that waiting to come forward with symptoms could result in some children becoming more seriously ill.
Dr Christian De Goede, Paediatric Clinical Lead for Lancashire and South Cumbria Integrated Care System (ICS), said:
“We are becoming concerned that children are coming into the hospital much later than they should be. It is really important that people seek medical advice as and when they have health concerns.
“The NHS is here for you and it is safe to attend. Do not wait, even if you think it may be COVID-19. Your child’s condition or illness could get worse, leading to more complications or even hospital admission.
“If your child or young person has symptoms that you are concerned about and it is not related to coronavirus, then your GP remains your first point of contact. Contact your GP practice either online, by an app or by phone to be assessed. You will receive advice through video consultation or over the phone and if you need a face to face appointment you will be advised what to do.”
Children can get coronavirus (COVID-19) too. If you’re worried about your child or not sure what to do for children under five, call the free NHS 111 service or for children aged over five use the NHS 111 online coronavirus service.
If your child has any of the coronavirus symptoms, a high temperature, a new continuous cough or a loss of taste or smell:
- Get a test to check if they have coronavirus as soon as possible. Apply online on GOV.UK to book a visit to a test site or order a home test kit if you cannot get to a test site. If you don’t have internet access, call 119.
- Stay at home and do not have visitors until you get the test result – only leave your home to have a test.
- For NHS information about understanding if your baby or toddler is seriously ill, visit: www.nhs.uk/conditions/pregnancy-and-baby/spotting-signs-serious-illness/
- For NHS information about looking after a sick child, visit: www.nhs.uk/conditions/pregnancy-and-baby/looking-after-sick-child/
- For advice for parents during coronavirus (COVID-19), visit: www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/symptoms/coronavirus-in-children/
- Healthy Young Minds provides mental health and wellbeing support and advice for family members and carers visit: www.healthyyoungmindslsc.co.uk/information/family-and-carers
- Healthy Young Minds provides mental health and wellbeing support and advice for children and young people: www.healthyyoungmindslsc.co.uk/information/children-and-young-people
- For more information about pregnancy and coronavirus visit Lancashire and South Cumbria Better Births: www.healthierlsc.co.uk/BetterBirths