Illness from coronavirus infection is less common and usually less severe in children and young adults. However, they can get infected and be carriers for the infection.
Generally minimising physical contact with each other will help avoid spreading the virus, so children and young people should avoid meeting up in groups while practicing physical distancing.
Whilst coronavirus is infectious to children it is rarely serious. If your child is unwell it is likely to be a non-coronavirus illness.
If your child has
coronavirus symtoms, call the helpline on +44 (0) 1534 445566
GPs and the Jersey General Hospital are still providing the same safe care that they have always done.
Parents and carers are reminded that routine healthcare is still available for children
If your child has any of the following you need to go to the
Emergency Department or call 999:
- becomes pale, mottled and feels abnormally cold to the touch
- pauses in their breathing (apnoeas), has an irregular breathing pattern or starts grunting
- severe difficulty in breathing becoming agitated or unresponsive
- is going blue round the lips
- has a fit / seizure
- becomes extremely distressed (crying inconsolably despite distraction), confused, very lethargic (difficult to wake) or unresponsive
- a rash that does not disappear with pressure (the ‘Glass test’)
- testicular pain, especially in teenage boys
Contact your GP surgery or out-of-hours service
Call your GP surgery or the
out-of-hours GP service if your child has any of the following:
- difficulty breathing including drawing in of the muscles below their lower ribs, at their neck or between their ribs (recession) or head bobbing
- seems dehydrated (dry mouth, sunken eyes, no tears, drowsy or passing less urine than usual)
- is becoming drowsy (excessively sleepy) or irritable (unable to settle them with toys, TV, food or picking up)- especially if they remain drowsy or irritable despite their fever coming down
- extreme shivering or complains of muscle pain
- babies under 3 months of age with a temperature above 38°C / 100.4°F
- infants 3-6 months of age with a temperature above 39°C / 102.2°F
- all infants and children with a fever above 38°C for more than 5 day
- is getting worse or if you are worried
- persistent vomiting and/or persistent severe abdominal pain
- blood in their poo or wee
- any limb injury causing reduced movement, persistent pain or head injury causing persistent crying or drowsiness
During the current coronavirus crisis at peak times, access to a health care professional may be delayed. If symptoms persist for 4 hours or more and you've not been able to speak to a GP, then take your child to the Emergency Department (A&E).
Continue providing care at home
If your child has none of the above medical issues, you can continue providing care at home. If you're concerned about your child, call the GP surgery.
Additional advice is available:
During the coronavirus pandemic childhood vaccinations should be maintained to reduce the serious risk of vaccine-preventable diseases.
Jersey's vaccination schedule
Talking to children and young people about coronavirus
Many parents and carers are wondering how to talk to their children about Coronavirus in an age-appropriate and reassuring way.
Here is some advice from the Government of Jersey, developed with the help of educational psychologists and Child Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) in Children, Young People, Education and Skills:
help children feel informed and get fact-based information
be age-appropriate with the information, very young children need brief and simple information
encourage children to ask questions, not talking about it can actually make children worry more
do your best to answer questions honestly and clearly
remind children with facts that very few people in Jersey have coronavirus and in other places the vast majority of people with the virus recover fully
focus on how to stay safe
remind children that they are taking care of themselves by washing their hands with soap and water for 20 seconds (or the length of two 'Happy Birthday' songs)
stick to a routine at home
give children extra attention and time to talk if and when they want to
Tips on talking to children about Coronavirus
Talking to kids about the coronavirus on the Child Mind Institute website
COVIBOOK by Mind Heart for children under the age of 7
School closure advice and information
Parents and families should make the right arrangements for children so that they remain in good physical and mental health. Parents and carers are responsible for keeping their children safe.
Advice for parents during school closures
Advice for early years settings and special schools
Advice for registered childminders
When making childcare arrangements:
- make sure that there are suitable alternative arrangements in place if your child’s usual school or childcare is no longer available
- any arrangements you make for your childcare must be given by a suitable responsible person who you know and trust
- a child who isn't old enough or who doesn't feel comfortable should never be left home alone. As a guide, the NSPCC advise that children under 12 years old shouldn't be left home alone
- if you’re able to work from home, you must provide appropriate care and supervision while working
- consider the risks of children carrying infection if grandparents or others aged 65+ or those with underlying health conditions are part of your usual or alternative care network
Critical workers and childcare
Childcare is available for critical workers within the Government of Jersey and critical workers outside Government. More information can be found on our
Critical workers and childcare page.
Child contact arrangements during 'Stay at Home'
You can find detailed guidance on contact with children subject to custody and care arrangements in the FAQ document below.
Guidance on contact with children subject to custody and care arrangements
talk to children about the virus and how to stay safe
reduce the number of contacts you and your children have with other people
postpone social and family commitments which bring people together
try to keep children physically active through playing in the garden if you have one or going to open spaces where it is easier to keep a distance from others
if your child or family has a lead worker or social worker, make sure you keep in touch with that person, or others in the service, on a regular basis
learning should continue at home, academic material has been provided by all schools
support children to maintain contact with friends and family over the phone and social media, remembering to maintain appropriate adult oversight
combine larger numbers of children in shared activities or extended family childcare
let your child participate in activities where germs and infections may be more easily spread due to multiple shared surfaces
organise group playdates, sleepovers, birthday parties, movie nights and large gatherings should be avoided
Children and Families Hub
The Children and Families Hub provides a single point of contact and referral centre for children, young people and families who require additional support to make sure they are appropriately safeguarded and protected. The Hub aims to streamline some of the current processes and bring the right support to children and families at the right time.
Email the Children and Families Hub or telephone +44 (0) 1534 519000
Children and Families Hub Briefing
Children and Families Hub FAQs