COVID-19 and Summer Safety for Kids

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With COVID-19 restrictions more or less fully lifted, some may be concerned about summer safety, particularly when it comes to children.

“As more and more adults get vaccinated, we’re going to see fewer infections in adults and the greater burden of COVID-19 will actually be in children,” says Dr. Jonathan Pinsky, leader of Edward Hospital‘s Infection Control and Prevention.

Young children still cannot get vaccinated but those 12 years of age and older can.

“These vaccines will provide the same protection as they do in adults,” says Pinsky.  “While severe infection is less common in children, it does happen.  Even in the United States there have been children who have died from COVID-19.  While this is rare, this is extremely tragic and entirely preventable with vaccines.”

Summer Safety Outdoors

As for activities outdoors, they are safer than those indoors.  The safest activities are those with only people within your own household or where you can maintain social distancing.  The following are instances where a mask is NOT needed for those who are not fully vaccinated:

  • Walk in the park
  • Small gatherings with fully vaccinated friends and family
  • Swimming, diving & water sports
  • Activities where individuals can keep a distance like golf or singles tennis
  • For children under 2 years old

Masks are, however, recommended for any activities where there are large gatherings, even if outside, such as amusement parks and concerts.

What about at a public pool?

Community pools are often packed this time of year.  Fortunately, COVID-19 is not transmitted through the water itself.  However, because it is transmissible via respiratory droplets and close contact, it’s still possible to contract the virus when in the water and  because it’s not possible to wear an effective mask in the pool, there’s little you can do to protect yourself or your child other than social distancing.  Experts maintain that is the best way to prevent transmission.  With that in mind, it’s important that if you take your kids swimming, to make sure the pool isn’t overcrowded and keep them away from other children.

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