Singapore looks to Denmark in the battle against Covid-19 amongst children 

None of the children infected with Covid-19 in Singapore developed severe illness requiring oxygen supplementation or intensive care. ST PHOTO: GIN TAY

In the global fight against the pandemic, countries are observing each other for reference on how to best cope and handle the spread of covid-19. Regarding the spread amongst children, Singapore is now looking at Denmark as the countries have some similarities in the Covid-19 figures but one big difference is in the number of children infected, The Straits Times reports. 

Singapore has detected 367 cases of covid-19 amongst children below the age of 12 which account for 0.6 percent of all local infections in the country, Senior Minister of State for Health Janil Puthucheary said in Parliament earlier last week. None of the children in Singapore has fallen severely ill so far requiring oxygen supplementation or intensive care, but the Ministry of Health is closely watching the situation in Denmark, where more children have been infected, yet not many have fallen seriously ill.

On 17 September, Singapore’s Ministry of Health (MOH) said that Singapore can look at the experience of Denmark, which has a similar population size of around 5.8 million and high testing rates for Covid-19. 

Amongst children aged nine years and below, Denmark has recorded a total of around 28,000 cases of covid-19 infections. Of these 302 patients were hospitalized, 16 patients were admitted to ICU, and two have died from the virus. Denmark has recorded more than 60.000 cases of covid-19 between those aged 10 to 19 and figures show that 298 were hospitalized with 21 in ICU.

Overall, the rate of hospital admissions for those aged 19 and below in Denmark is 0.67 percent while that for ICU admissions is 0.04 percent.

To boost the overall immunity against covid-19 in Denmark, Health authorities started offering the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine to children aged 12 to 15 in July and Singapore attends to follow suit.

In the statement on 17 September, MOH said that the vaccination of children below 12 years old should start sometime early next year after the safety and efficacy aspects of the vaccines have been studied. In the meantime, family members should get vaccinated to prevent spreading covid-19 to children. 

As of 14 September, Denmark has fully vaccinated around 74 percent of its population while Singapore is at around 81 percent.

About Gregers Møller

Editor-in-Chief • ScandAsia Publishing Co., Ltd. • Bangkok, Thailand

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