Protecting Young Children Against COVID-19

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DES MOINES, Iowa — Last week, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced that people who are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 can stop wearing masks in most situations.

The CDC’s new guidance still recommends people wear masks in crowded indoor settings like buses, planes, hospitals, prisons and homeless shelters. However, anyone who is fully vaccinated can participate in most indoor and outdoor activities — large or small — without wearing a mask or physically distancing.

In response to the CDC’s new guidance, a medical professional at Broadlawns Medical Center recommends parents make the right choice for their family.

“I will continue wearing a mask because I think it’s a small price to pay for being able to protect my children,” said Nicole Gilg Gachiani, chief physician quality officer at Broadlawns Medical Center. “I do think with these new recommendations from the CDC as well as the Iowa Department of Public Health that is now a personal decision for people to make.”

Hospitalizations and deaths from COVID-19 are uncommon among young children, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics.

However, Dr. Gilg said parents should continue to wash their hands, wear a mask if they are comfortable, and plan outdoor activities for the summer months. “Try to move things outdoors. We have lots of very good evidence that transmission of COVID-19 is incredibly rare and in most cases absent when people are outdoors,” she said.

Pfizer is currently testing doses on children 5 years old and younger.

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