It’s a scenario that’s run through the minds of many parents over the past few months – how will they care for their children if they contract COVID-19?
Taking precautions to avoid contracting COVID-19, like washing your hands often, physical distancing when out of the house, avoiding touching your face when you’re out, and wearing a non-medical mask when you cannot physically distance are working very well at preventing the spread of the virus in Saskatchewan, noted Dr. Simon Kapaj, Medical Health Officer for Saskatoon.
“If you respect those principles, the risk of contracting the virus is low,” he noted. “You protect all your loved ones, including your babies, if you do this.”
“We ask families, if one of them shows symptoms of COVID-19, to self-isolate. That means using a separate bedroom and separate bathroom for two weeks. If you have to share space, make sure the room has good air flow by opening the window to increase air circulation. Improving ventilation helps remove respiratory droplets from the air.”
That’s 100 per cent isolation – staying away from all family member 100 per cent of the time for 14 days or until symptoms are gone.
That is sometimes hard to do, especially in the case of a single parent, or when both parents show symptoms.
“But if you do happen to get COVID-19, it doesn’t mean your kids will automatically get it as well. You can protect them,” noted Kapaj. “If the parent is too ill to care for the child, they should see if there is a caregiver outside of the home with whom the child can stay. The caregiver should not be someone who is
at higher risk for severe illness from COVID-19, as the child has likely been exposed to the virus.”
If you do have to care for your child while you are COVID-19 positive, you can still reduce the risk of transmission by: