27,000 S'pore children aged 5-11 infected with Covid-19 since Omicron appeared: MOH

There are more than 300,000 children aged five to 11 in Singapore.

Belmont Lay | February 28, 2022, 12:23 PM

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Some 27,000 children from five to 11 years old have been infected with Covid-19 since December 2021, the Ministry of Health (MOH) said, which represents about 9 per cent of the total number of children in this age group.

That was when the first locally transmitted Omicron case was reported in Singapore at the end of last year.

It is not known if the majority of children infected over the last two months contracted the Omicron variant of Covid-19 as no breakdown of numbers were provided.

But the Omicron variant is now the dominant strain of the virus here.

Most not serious

The majority are well enough to be discharged within three days.

The number of young patients admitted for Covid-19 has doubled since the Omicron variant appeared, but no figures were provided.

MOH said 57 children under 12 were currently hospitalised with Covid-19, as of Sunday, Feb. 27.

One required oxygen but none were in intensive care.

KK Women's and Children's Hospital (KKH) and National University Hospital, two public hospitals here capable of providing specialised care for children, said most children who are hospitalised for Covid-19 are not vaccinated often because they are too young to get the jab, according to The Straits Times.

Emergency departments busy

Emergency departments have remained busy despite MOH telling parents to stay away from them unless their children need urgent care.

The ministry added that nearly 222,000 children aged five to 11 have had at least one Covid-19 vaccine dose, while another 14,000 have registered to get the jab.

There are more than 300,000 children aged five to 11 in Singapore.

ST also reported that parents are still concerned about vaccination.

However, two local doctors interviewed said the scientific data favours inoculation in helping blunt the odds of a child getting Covid-19, and thwarts the risk of developing symptoms that could require hospitalisation.

The Health Sciences Authority said in a safety update that as of Jan. 31, Singapore has seen 10 cases of children aged five to 11 with serious side effects after vaccination, out of a total of 238,253 doses administered to this age group.

Children who are unvaccinated run a much higher risk of contracting Covid-19 on a day-to-day basis, one of the doctors interviewed by ST said.

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