Recently, the Federal Drug Administration and Centers for Disease Control approved and recommended the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine for children 5-11 years, taking us one step closer to controlling the COVID-19 pandemic. Too many children have been infected with COVID-19 and serious cases can occur even in healthy children. Cases have increased dramatically since the arrival of the Delta variant. Nationally, over 1.9 million 5-11 year-olds have been infected and more than 8,300 hospitalized with COVID-19. Some children can also have long-term health effects, and COVID-19 is now a leading cause of death for this age group. (more…)
It’s early September and that means it’s time for back to school and also back to extracurricular activities. Many parents often wonder – which activities are the best for my child? How many activities are enough? Or too many? This year, with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, there is the added concern of how to stay safe both at school and at after-school activities. After so much social isolation and disruption of routines during this past school year, we may be eager to return to “normal” busy schedules. Our forced downtime of the past year offers an opportunity to be thoughtful about how to incorporate activities for our children and teenagers. (more…)
As we emerge from this COVID haze, it is a great time to get your children caught up on their routine immunizations. If your child is eligible for a COVID vaccine (currently, those 12 years and up), now is also a great time.
As a mother of three, I will list the three reasons I think vaccines are so important, and why I have chosen to vaccinate my children (ages 11, 9, and 6) on time: (more…)
Hennepin Healthcare staff delivers exceptional care without exception, and this has remained true even during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Early in the pandemic, families were understandably fearful of coming to the clinics for preventative healthcare services such as immunizations. Over the next months, childhood immunization rates began to plummet nationally and in Minnesota, and there was looming risk of not just COVID-19 but vaccine preventable diseases.
A team led by pediatrician, Dr. Dawn Martin, pediatric nurse practitioner, Sheyanga Beecher, and community paramedic/EMS, Amber Brown, recognized the importance of protecting children as the most vulnerable among us. Dr. Martin and her team wanted to make sure that if children could not come to Hennepin Healthcare for essential vaccines, we would go to them. (more…)
Measles infections continue to spread in Minnesota with cases reported in Hennepin, Ramsey and Crow Wing counties. Unvaccinated children are getting this vaccine-preventable disease, most of whom are under five years of age. HCMC is working closely with the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) as they monitor and provide guidance for this recent outbreak.
Measles is highly infectious and can cause severe illness leading to hospitalization or even death. Early symptoms of measles include fever, cough, runny nose and watery eyes. A rash then develops which spreads from the head to the rest of the body. Complications from measles include ear infections, pneumonia, and encephalitis (brain infection).
Measles spreads quickly among people who have not been vaccinated. The Measles, Mumps and Rubella (MMR) vaccine is highly effective in preventing measles if you are exposed. (more…)