Health tips

Nine questions about children's epidemic prevention | Updated: 2020-02-07 07:44
A girl and her father are seen wearing masks at Beijing Railway Station on Jan 21, 2020. [Photo by Zou Hong/]

1. Are children vulnerable to the novel coronavirus?

The National Health Commission has identified that children are vulnerable to the novel coronavirus. There have been no severe or fatal cases in children and the symptoms are mild after infection.

2. What are the possible ways for children to be infected?

The main transmission route is spread by droplet transmission, such as a patient's coughs and sneezing, or by contact transmission, such as contact with the mouth or nose or conjunctiva of the eye through contaminated hands.

3. Can children still get vaccine in the near future?

Different kinds of vaccines are given during different periods of time and there is no need to be worried if some are given a few weeks late.

However, for vaccines with a strict month or age limit, it is recommended to complete the vaccination before the time limit.

For those at risk of exposure to rabies or tetanus, it is recommended they complete the vaccination as soon as possible.

4. Is breastfeeding still safe?

Mothers should take personal protection -- wear a face mask when breastfeeding, wash hands and keep their nipples clean. If the mother has a confirmed or suspected coronavirus case, breast feeding should be suspended and she should be separated from the baby.

5. Can children still eat chicken, duck and fish meat?

They can eat chicken, duck and fish meat, but make sure it is cooked. Also, do not chew food with your mouth and then feed your child. Do not blow air through your mouth to cool food.

6. Under what kind of situation do children need to go to hospital?

If the child has cough, fever and other symptoms, but didn't go outside nor had contact with infected patients, parents can first monitor the child's temperature and provide home treatment.

If the body temperature is not falling and the child appears to have an aggravated cough, breathing difficulties, a poor mental state and other symptoms, it is recommended to take the child to the nearest hospital that provides pediatric outpatient services.

7. How do children wear face masks?

Generally speaking, little children should not wear masks. The heavy duty N95 mask has the worst air permeability and is not suitable for babies.

When children wear masks, parents should always pay attention to whether the child has breathing difficulties or experiences other discomfort.

8. How to wash children's hands properly?

At all times, apply soap and rinse with running water. If they are going out and can't readily wash their hands with running water, always carry paper towels and an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.

9. How to protect children from the virus when going out?

Stay at home is the best protection. If you must go out, wear a face mask, drive yourself and try not to use public transportation. If it's a short distance, walking is the best option.

Please feel free to contact us by sending your questions to or commenting on China Daily app. We will ask experts to answer them.

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