Patient Care: Pediatric Care

COVID-19 caregiver resources for pediatric care providers.

Overview: COVID-19 and Children

COVID-19 is impacting children though to a lesser extent than adults. The Germ Watch team at Primary Children’s is tracking rates of testing, positive cases, and outcomes in children. Please see this regularly updated report  with Utah specific information. When symptoms are mild, children are best cared for at home to mitigate the risk of spread. We are encouraging families to stay closely connected with their child’s primary care medical home with any questions or concerns.

Clinical Guidance and Resources

We encourage you to continue access trusted clinical resources on an ongoing basis, as guidance is changing rapidly as we learn more. These include:

Latest Updates

Pediatric-Specific Webinars 

Intermountain Children’s Health – a multidisciplinary group of clinicians and healthcare professionals specializing in the care and support of children – is providing monthly updates and presentations from pediatric professionals across the region. The virtual chat, delivered via WebEx, is hosted by Dr. Neal Davis, Medical Director for Pediatric Community Based Care for Intermountain Children's Health. Click here to view past recordings, click here for copies of presentations, handouts and Q&As, or email Dr. Davis to be included on the monthly invitation.

What is MIS-C?

Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children (or MIS-C for short) is a condition that has recently been related to COVID-19, commonly believed to be an “over-reaction” of the immune system in fighting the COVID-19 virus.  The condition is believed to be extremely rare among children, even those affected by COVID-19. The condition involves inflammation of the heart, liver, and other organs throughout the body, and symptoms of the condition include fever, low blood pressure, abdominal pain, sore throat, headache, vomiting, rash, and pink eye. Click here for clinical guidance for possible MIS-C.

Newborn policies at Intermountain

Intermountain Healthcare’s hospitals have updated their policies for delivery, newborn hospital care, discharge, and transition to outpatient care in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. Find out more and download the policies here

COVID and Medically Complex Children

National and international epidemiologists suggest that children with novel coronavirus infections have milder illnesses when compared to adults. However, heightened attention to the needs of children with medical complexity is advised, as these children might be more susceptible to the severe respiratory complications associated with COVID-19. Here is a statement from Developmental Pediatrics and Neurology affirms the rights to treatment of all individuals. Additional information can be found on the Utah Medical Home portal.

Recommendations:

This is a good time to reach out to the children with medical complexity and their families in your care and guide them through this time. Families are anxious and you can:

  • Reassure them of your support
  • Review and update their child’s plan of care
  • Establish clear lines of communication and action, if concerns arise
  • Affirm that your medical team is available and willing to help.

Subspecialist Clinic Strategies

Children who require care from a pediatric subspecialist during this time are encouraged to contact the clinic for visit options.  If the child should be seen in person for an exam, procedure, or treatment, the clinics have infection control processes in place to protect all involved.  Only 1 person can accompany the child to the appointment.  If possible to conduct a routine visit via technology, an appointment can be made for a televisit. 

Key Clinic Strategies

Learn key messages, strategies, infection control protocols, and structural protection in providing pediatric care by downloading this document here, which was a joint creation by Intermountain Primary Children’s Hospital and the Utah AAP.

Talking with Children About COVID

Children are experiencing significant changes in routines and stability related to COVID19.  Medical providers for children are being asked about how to respond to these psychological needs.  The National Childhood Traumatic Stress Network (NCTSN) and the Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress (CSTS) have put out valuable guidance for medical providers on this issue.  See the following links for more information:

Necessary Medical Care, Newborn Care and Vaccines

The US Center for Disease Control recently released a statement emphasizing the importance of newborn care and well child care as it relates to maintaining childhood vaccines particularly in young children (see the CDC’s guidance on Maintaining Childhood Vaccinations During COVID 19 Pandemic).  Medical providers for children around the state of Utah have largely adopted practices suggested by the American Academy of Pediatrics (see the AAP’s guidance on Minimizing COVID 19 Exposure in Medical Offices for Children) that minimize risk COVID 19 exposure and allow for the delivery of services to newborns and young children. 

Elective and Non-Urgent Surgeries, Procedures

Find the latest updates on elective and non-urgent surgeries and procedures at the procedures and clinic info page.

Pediatric Respiratory Outpatient Services Paused

In order to mitigate the risk of COVID-19 exposure to patients and caregivers, all Intermountain and Primary Children’s pediatric respiratory outpatient clinic services have been temporarily paused until further notice.  Upon departing from primary care or Instacare visits or discharging from ED or inpatient stays, families should be instructed to communicate with their child’s primary care team with questions about changes in symptoms or other concerns.  Emergency departments remain the site of service for significant acute worsening of respiratory status.  Intermountain Children’s Health leadership will re-evaluate the availability of these services on an ongoing basis in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Primary Children’s Visitor Restrictions

To protect the risk of exposure to patients, families, caregivers, and communities, Primary Children’s Hospital and other Intermountain facilities have implemented visitor restriction and screening policies. To protect the risk of exposure to patients, families, caregivers, and communities, Primary Children’s Hospital and other Intermountain facilities have implemented visitor restriction and screening policies. Please visit here for the latest visitor restrictions for all Intermountain Healthcare facilities, including Primary Children’s Hospital.