Should You Take Your Child to the Doctor During COVID-19?

Should you be seeing your pediatrician during COVID-19? We’ve put together the best practices and current recommendations to keep you informed so that you can make the best decisions for your family. 

This information was compiled from government sources, medical journals, experts, and more.

Keep reading to learn more about the current best practices regarding well child visits.

Official Guidelines and Recommendations

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and most major medical providers seem to largely be in agreement now about neonatal, infant, baby, and small child care. 

As recently as May 8th, 2020 the AAP promulgated additional guidelines for providers, hospitals, and clinics, while the Healthy Children arm of the AAP published a condensed guide for parents as recently as May 14th, 2020. 

Additionally, the CDC has published information that supports AAP recommendations and highlights the need for ongoing care, particularly when it comes to keeping children up-to-date with immunizations. 

Should You Take Your Child to the Doctor During COVID-19?

Yes. Now that the initial wave of chaos has largely passed, the AAP and other credible sources recommend that you keep up with regularly scheduled well child visits with your pediatrician. Here are some of the reasons the AAP recommends going to visit your pediatrician:

  • Regularly scheduled visits for newborns
  • To keep your child up-to-date on immunizations*
  • Regular screenings for hearing and vision problems
  • Check-ups to monitor growth, blood pressure, and other vital signs
  • For the purposes of labs such as for anemia
  • To monitor developmental milestones
  • And to treat infections or injuries

* Immunizations in particular are a significant concern right now. Scientists and medical professionals are seeing a decline in immunizations, likely caused at least in part because fewer people are attending in-person well child visits. It’s vitally important to try and keep up with your child’s immunizations as well as you can. 

With that in mind, are there any situations when you should not go to the doctor?

When to Consider Telehealth

Depending on your situation and the current state of COVID-19 in your area, your medical providers may advise you to connect over a video chat or by telephone. Under these circumstances, you should listen to your providers and follow their recommendations.

What to Do if a Child Is Sick

So long as your child’s condition does not appear to be a medical emergency, the best practice right now is to call your doctor first. Your doctor can help determine whether or not you should bring your child in for an in-person visit. Trust your common sense–if it feels like someone is in serious danger, dial 911 or head to the emergency room. Otherwise, call your doctor and give their advice, first. 

What to Do in Emergencies

The official best practice is astonishingly simple: trust your instincts and apply common sense. A call to your pediatrician can produce better results than a call to 911 or a trip to the ER. However, if you feel like there is an immediate emergency, then calling 911 or heading to the ER are good options.

More than anything, you should not be afraid to seek medical help because of fears or anxieties about COVID-19. Medical professionals have now had adequate time to properly prepare themselves and the facilities to promote your safety and the safety of your child, the safety of others, and the safety of themselves. 

Do not put yourself or your child at risk over fears of the unknown–if something is wrong, seek medical help. 

Sources:

Is it OK to see my pediatrician during COVID-19? (2020). HealthyChildren.org. Retrieved 19 May 2020, from https://www.healthychildren.org/English/tips-tools/ask-the-pediatrician/Pages/Is-it-OK-to-call-the-pediatrician-during-COVID-19-even-if-Im-not-sure-my-child-is-sick.aspx

Guidance on Providing Pediatric Well-Care During COVID-19. (2020). Services.aap.org. Retrieved 19 May 2020, from https://services.aap.org/en/pages/2019-novel-coronavirus-covid-19-infections/guidance-on-providing-pediatric-well-care-during-covid-19/

Santoli, J., Lindley, M., DeSilva, M., Kharbanda, E., Daley, M., & Galloway, L. et al. (2020). Effects of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Routine Pediatric Vaccine Ordering and Administration — United States, 2020. MMWR. Morbidity And Mortality Weekly Report, 69(19), 591-593. doi:10.15585/mmwr.mm6919e2

Contact a Cerebral Palsy and Birth Injury Attorney

Getting help for a child with a birth injury can make a big difference. Early intervention and early treatment is often key to helping improve a child’s wellbeing. You must act quickly.

If you have questions about whether your child’s birth injury was caused by a preventable medical error, then our attorneys at Brown Trial Firm may be able to help.

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If you would like help investigating your child’s birth injury, please contact us. Our birth injury attorneys will be happy to give you a free case evaluation. We can also point you to great non-legal resources that can help you figure out your next steps.

Many birth injuries that cause cerebral palsy could have been prevented. Don’t wait, get help today. Call +1 (844) 232-9228, email us at [email protected], or use the live chat button for 24/7 assistance.

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