Thus far, a total of 367 children below the age of 12 have been infected with Covid-19, although none have experienced severe illness requiring oxygen supplementation or ICU care.
Senior Minister of State for Health Janil Puthucheary said in Parliament on Sep. 14 that these cases account for 0.6 per cent of all Covid-19 cases in Singapore, he added.
172 children are infected with the Delta variant
Out of these 367 cases, 172 of them have been infected with the Delta variant of the virus.
As for a breakdown of these cases by age:
- 50 cases or 13.6 per cent of them were aged zero to one,
- 83 cases or 22.6 per cent were aged two to four,
- 76 cases or 20.7 per cent were aged five to six, and;
- 158 cases or 43.1 per cent were aged seven to 12.
Global data shows that a very low proportion of children experience severe illness compared to adults
Puthucheary added that according to global data, a very low proportion of children with Covid-19 experienced severe illness, as compared to adults.
"The percentage of infected children who experienced a severe illness and require intensive care is 0.7 per cent in Israel, 0.3 per cent in the Republic of Korea and 0.6 per cent in France."
Puthucheary also noted that there was evidence which suggested that children with underlying medical conditions such as genetic, neurological, and metabolic conditions, or some degree of a chronic condition or immunosuppression might be at increased risk for severe illness.
Parents should focus on minimising the risk of Covid-19 for their children as cases rise
Puthucheary highlighted that amidst rising cases, parents should focus on minimising the risk of Covid-19 for their children.
Apart from maintaining safe distancing, mask-wearing and good-hygiene practices, they should also get vaccinated to reduce the risk of transmitting Covid-19 to a child, and see a doctor in the event of feeling unwell.
As for parents with immunocompromised children, Puthucheary added that parents should take on additional precautions such as avoiding crowded location and minimising the number of visitors.
He said, "We are...mindful that the number of cases in the community is rising, and there may be more children infected with Covid-19 in the future. We will ensure that these children receive appropriate care if their illness is more severe."
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