As more kids go back to day care, pediatricians get busier

dr. Tara Berman, a pediatrician at Nemours duPont Pediatrics, said many families chose not to enter in the past year to minimize exposure to the coronavirus, but that resulted in children being delayed in their welfare and vaccine schedules. Berman urged that parents ensure that children 12 and older are vaccinated against the coronavirus, as the CDC recommends, and that parents bring children of all ages to get their flu shots in the fall.

At St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children in Philadelphia, pediatricians typically saw between 45 and 80 children a day prior to the pandemic, said Dr. Daniel Taylor, a pediatrician there. During the lockdowns and after, he said, doctors saw about 20 children a day.

However, in the past two to three weeks, they have been having between 40 and 50 children a day, he said.

“I think parents just feel a lot more comfortable going back to the doctor, where most of what we do is reassurance,” Taylor said. “It’s just telling the parent they’re doing the right thing and we’re glad they came in, and just talk to them about how the body usually takes care of itself.”

While St. Christopher’s has been at full capacity for the past six months when it comes to children coming in for health checks, Taylor said it has certainly seen an increase in in-patient visits over the past four weeks. Schools are actually some of the safest places in the world for children, he said, noting that transmission of COVID-19 in schools and nurseries is very low. He added that most of those still require children to wear masks, except those under 2 years old.

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