A dedicated virtual service providing specialist support for children and young people diagnosed with COVID-19.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes, the latest evidence is overwhelmingly in support of continued breastfeeding.
Maternal antibodies, produced by your body when you are exposed to COVID-19, are actually beneficial to babies, and are passed on to your child via breastmilk. According to the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, there is also evidence of maternal antibodies being passed onto baby via breastmilk following a full course of a COVID-19 vaccination.
Current research also shows that newborn babies rarely develop serious symptoms when exposed to COVID-19. There is no need to socially distance from your baby, with skin-to-skin contact encouraged.
If your child contracts COVID-19 you can safely care for them at home, like you would most other viruses.
Where a child needs extra monitoring or support you should call your GP, paediatrician or you may like to call our Child and Adolescent Virtual Urgent Care Service (CAVUCS) for online support or bring them to your nearest emergency department.
The majority of children infected with COVID- 19 only have mild symptoms. It is not uncommon for children to test positive for the virus but not show any symptoms, however they are still able to spread the virus.
Most common Symptoms
- Runny nose
- Sore throat
- Diarrhoea and lethargy
- Loss of taste or smell
As with all viruses, your child is more at risk if they have other medical conditions such as asthma, obesity, diabetes; inflammatory bowel disease or they are immune-compromised.
When caring for your child at home, we recommend you:
- Give your child small amounts of fluid, often. They may not feel like drinking much so may need your help and encouragement
- Offer your child food regularly
- Encourage rest
- Use paracetamol or ibuprofen only if you think your child is in pain or appears uncomfortable with fever. Do not give more than the recommend dosage and check with your medical professional if your child is taking other regular medication.
If your child is displaying any of the following symptoms or signs, please call Triple 0 (000)
- Difficult, or fast breathing
- Pale or mottled skin colour
- Excessive drowsiness or confusion
- Persistent fever higher than 38 degrees Celsius, which does not reduce after giving paracetamol or ibuprofen
- Poor fluid intake, or reduced frequency of feeds (for infants)
- Reduced urine or wet nappies
- Chest pain
- Severe or worsening abdominal pain
- Frequent vomiting and or diarrhoea
- Decreased appetite
If you need urgent medical care please do not drive yourself to the GP or hospital.
- Call 000
- Inform the emergency operator that your child has COVID
- Ensure all family members wear a mask when the ambulance team arrive to your home.
If you’re using a mobile phone and Triple Zero (000) isn’t answering, try calling 112.
If you need further non-urgent support, call the COVID-19 Response Care Team on 1800 272 872 or you can access our Child and Adolescent Virtual Urgent Care service by visiting our website www.wch.sa.gov.au/virtualurgentcare
The best protection you can provide your children is for the adults in their lives to be vaccinated.
The Paediatric Infectious Diseases Group of Australia and New Zealand, which is the expert body in this area, also recommends other well-established simple prevention techniques which we’ve used throughout the pandemic.
They include practising good hand hygiene, social distancing, wearing a mask in public spaces and staying home if you’re sick.
It’s also important to remember that the impact of COVID on children is less about becoming infected and sick and more about the social impacts, so it’s also important to keep a check on yours and your child’s wellbeing and reach out for support if you’re worried.
Children and Coronavirus
Wellbeing in isolation
SA COVID-19 Mental Health Support Line – 1800 632 753
Available 8.00 am to 8.00 pm, 7 days a week.
Aboriginal families and COVID-19
The South Australian Aboriginal community has done a deadly job of staying strong and stopping the spread of COVID-19. Further information can be found below if your child tests positive to COVID.
Culturally and linguistically diverse families and COVID-19
Translated information for CALD families with COVID-19 positive children can be found in the links below: