New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: Whether kids are susceptible to COVID-19 or not - is a question that looms in the mind of every parent. With the second wave striking India quite drastically, the fear among parents has increased manifold. In the recent episode of Jagran Dialogues, Jagran New Media’s Senior Editor Pratyush Ranjan interacted with Dr Narendra Kumar Arora to bring awareness about paediatric Covid-19 cases.

Dr Arora is the Executive Director of The INCLEN Trust International, New Delhi. He is the President of AIIMS Patna & AIIMS-Deoghar. He is also the Chairperson of the Operational Research Group of the National Task Force for COVID 19, Indian Council of Medical Research - ICMR.

Here are the excerpts from the interview:

1. Why covid vaccination is required for kids of age below 18 years? Will two doses are required or there will be just one dose?

It is important to know how vulnerable children aged below 18 are to the coronavirus. I would like to make this clear that the infection in kids is almost equivalent to those in other age groups. Almost 25 per cent of kids were found covid infected in the last serosurvey, which was carried out in January.

Secondly, symptoms in kids are very few and they too end soon. But the important thing here is that the kids become the carriers of the virus. They can spread the virus among their family, neighbours, friends, classmates, teachers, etc. Hence, what I am trying to say is that although kids have lesser chances of contracting the infection, they are a big means of spreading the virus. And this is the main reason that the schools aren't reopening. These are the reasons that vaccinating the kids is necessary.

In addition, there are two vaccine trials going on in the country for kids. One is for ages 2-18 and the second is for ages 12-16. But the number of doses in the case of kids will remain the same.

2. Some kids also suffer from a particular type of illness. Are there any special guidelines for them?

If a child suffering from some illness develops covid, the chances of it turning fatal increases a lot. There are kids who are obese, have genetic disorders, have blood pressure, or heart diseases. Such kids need to be vaccinated on priority. It's the responsibility of every parent to get their child vaccinated when it comes. Also, kids should also encourage their parents to get the vaccine. If India wants to win over coronavirus, this should be done.

3. Do children show different symptoms than adults? What do you do if your children are showing symptoms?

The symptoms remain the same in children - fever, cold and cough, chest pain, diarrhoea, etc. A special illness in kids is called MIS - Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome. It could emerge after 2-6 weeks post-recovery. Its symptoms include fever, spots on the body, anxiety, heart failure, and breathing problems. Thus, if a kid or someone in his/her family has recovered from coronavirus, it is important to take all the necessary precautions. If any such symptoms emerge, a child specialist must be consulted immediately.

Watch the full interview here:

Posted By: Talibuddin Khan