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GPs should evaluate illness in children ‘in the normal way’, says NHS England



NHS England says it has noticed an ‘increase in delayed presentations’ of children who have ‘life threatening illness’ since the start of the coronavirus (Covid-19) crisis.

It has urged GPs to continue to assess symptoms in children ‘in the normal way’ despite the ongoing pandemic.

It said this comes as Covid-19 tends to be mild and self-limiting in children. It said the ‘threshold’ for face-to-face consultations should not have changed as a result of the current situation.

In a bulletin to practices, NHS England said: ‘Over the last week we have noticed an increase in delayed presentations of children with life threatening illness.

‘The threshold for face-to-face consultation, with appropriate infection control measures, in general practice and the referral to secondary care should not change during the Covid-19 pandemic.

‘Covid-19 tends to be a mild self-limiting respiratory illness in children. Therefore prolonged illness and/or other symptoms should not be attributed to COVID-19 and should be evaluated in the normal way.’