BENGALURU: There has been a spike in paediatric Covid-19 cases in the last two weeks, a TNIE analysis of the week-on-week Covid war room data between November 1 and January 2, among the 0-9 and 10-19 years age groups, has revealed.
Between November 1 and December 19, there were weeks which saw a negative growth rate in paediatric and adolescent cases.
However, later on, cases of infection in this group increased from -31.23 per cent (December 6 to December 19) to 40.03 percent (December 13 to December 26). It further rose to 69.92 per cent between December 20 and January 2.
The trend is similar among adults, and in fact, higher, as Omicron is spreading fast, said Dr Yogananda Reddy, consultant paediatrician at Prithvi Children’s Hospital, Ballari, and member of state high-level expert committee on the third wave.
“Children who were spared in the earlier two waves may get infected this time. Government school clusters are very few and they are the safest zone. This is because they are located in vast open spaces on the outskirts and in rural areas, with smaller class strength. The spread to children is most likely from the household contacts as the adults go outside for work,” Dr Reddy said.
According to him, in areas such as Bengaluru, where schools are located in small spaces, with higher class strength, the spread would be higher.
However, as per Dr CN Reddy, professor of pediatrics, Bowring and Lady Curzon Medical College Hospital sources of infection in children are both parents, grandparents and any other adults at home, as well as cluster cases that develop in schools.
"COVID-19 is a respiratory infection that spreads fast. If children are showing symptoms, they must isolate at home, recover and then return to school. Infection in children in all three waves has proved to be mild. Even at Bowring, we have six children who are asymptomatic. The pediatric patients recover fast," Dr. Reddy said.
Most clusters in Karnataka have been nursing and medical colleges with few in day schools and residential schools.
Week - New cases
November 29 to December 5 - 441 cases
December 6 to December 12 - 429 cases
December 13 to December 19 - 295 cases
December 20 to December 26- 419 cases
December 27 to January 2 - 712
Week on week rise
Between November 29 and December 12 : (Minus) -2.72 percent
Between December 6 and December 19 : (Minus) - 31.23 percent
Between December 13 and December 26 : 42.03 percent
Between December 20 and January 2 : 69.92 percent