Dear Grow Families,
We are so very grateful for your support and patience as together we navigate this Covid-19 spike. Currently, Texas is averaging over 50,000 positive cases per day. This has resulted in, once again, an overwhelming volume of calls to our triage line and front desk. Additionally, we regret that due to the incredible volume, we are only able to offer testing to patients who are showing symptoms of illness at this time. Information on testing to rule out, or for return to school/daycare can be found through Austintexas.gov Here, through ARC testing services, as well as the testing locations AISD provides.
While we always love to hear from our families and are more than happy to help you with your children, we are unable to answer general, non-patient symptom specific medical questions regarding COVID-19, isolation precautions, testing and social activities related to the pandemic at this time.
Your help referencing this list of frequently asked questions before reaching out with COVID questions will enable us to care for our ill and/or medically fragile patients without delay. The questions also have links to medically credible, validated resources that we refer to with more information, should you need further assistance.
The American Academy of Pediatrics also offers a symptom checker Here will likely answer many of your questions.
Thank you very much for your support and patience. We will get through this together, as a GROW family!
How do I take care of my child diagnosed with COVID-19?
Since COVID-19 is a virus, and there is no cure, we rely on the
patient’s immune system to do the hard work. The role of parents, in
conjunction with GROW, is to provide the supportive care the patient
needs so that their immune system can handle the task at hand. Care is
based on symptoms.
By selecting the appropriate body system on the American Academy of
Pediatrics Online symptom checker, you can follow the tabs with information, advice, home treatment and when to call GROW for any symptom your child may have.
I/my child have/has been exposed to someone with a known case of COVID-19. When do I/we need to test?
The CDC recommends that you test 5 days after your last known
exposure to that individual, or as soon as symptoms occur. This applies
even if you are fully vaccinated and/or boosted.
For information on testing click here or CDC Testing Tool
How do I know when my child needs more help than I can give them at home for COVID 19?
For the vast majority of children, COVID-19, including the Omicron variant,
causes milder disease and symptoms that are more on the scale of a bad cold
and/or flu. For other children, typically those with underlying health
conditions, symptoms can be more severe.
Concerning symptoms would be:
- Difficulty breathing (breathing fast, noisy breathing, ribs pulling in
- with each breath)
- Confusion, inability to stay awake
- Bluish color to lips or face
- Inability to keep liquids down, concern for dehydration (making
- fewer diapers, dry inside of the mouth, crying without tears)
- Sore throat that prevents them from eating/drinking
For more information click here and here.
***Of course, if your child has any symptoms that concern you,
you should call the clinic or if it is a medical emergency, call
I was exposed to someone with COVID-19. Should I quarantine and for how long?
If you are unvaccinated, or not yet boosted, you should stay home for 5 days. After that, continue to wear a mask around others for an additional 5 days. Test on day 5, if possible. If symptoms develop during that time, you should be tested immediately and return to quarantine.
If you have been boosted, or completed the primary series of Moderna or Pfizer vaccine within the last 6 months, or J&J vaccine within the last 2 months, you do NOT need to quarantine but should wear a mask around other for 10 days. Test on day 5, if possible. If symptoms develop during that time, you should be tested immediately and quarantine.
For more information, please click here.
What steps do I need to take at home while I, or someone in my household, has COVID-19 or is in isolation for COVID-19?
The individual(s) in isolation or quarantine will need to be separated from the others in the home as much as possible. If possible, a dedicated restroom would be ideal.
Additionally, it is recommended that you:
- Frequently clean common surfaces
- Wash hands regularly, for 20 seconds with soap and water, but certainly after using the restroom, blowing the nose, before and after meals.
- Cover coughs and sneezes with a disposable tissue, then wash hands
- If the individual in quarantine/isolation cannot be kept apart from others, they should mask around them. If the individual is too young/unable to mask, masking the others in the home will provide some protection.
- Do not drink or eat after the ill individual, or anyone currently isolating due to exposure. (No sharing cups, silverware, etc unless washed between uses.
- If possible, open windows for ventilation, to promote fresh air exchange in the house.
- Household members will need to test 5 days after the individual’s positive test was taken.
For more information, please click here.
We found out that there was a positive case in my child’s school. Does my child need to test and isolate?
Did your child have direct contact with that individual? If the covid+ individual is in another class, grade, etc and your child was not in close contact with them, testing is not needed at this time. It is still wise to monitor your child, though, and follow all precautions (masking, hand hygiene, getting a vaccine) and test and isolate if any symptoms develop.
For information regarding the definition of close contact and isolation/quarantine, click here.
See also the CDC Viral Testing Tool here.
My child received a note from school that someone in their classroom tested positive. Does my child need to test?
Yes, your child will need to test 5 days after their last known exposure to that child (the last day the two were together). In the meantime, your child will need to isolate at home. If your child develops any symptoms prior to five days, you may test at that time. This applies even if your child is vaccinated and/or boosted. We recommend utilizing the testing locations AISD has available, Curative, ARC, or testing options listed here.
For information regarding the definition of close contact and isolation/
quarantine, click here.
The CDC has a Viral Testing Tool here.
I have COVID-19 and have been isolating. When can I come out of isolation?
The CDC recommends isolating for 5 days after the onset of symptoms/confirmation of positive test. If after 5 days you are improving, have no symptoms or remained asymptomatic through the duration, you may leave isolation *but must always * mask around others for the next 5 days.
Do you know which COVID-19 variant my child has?
We do not know the specific variant. That requires a more specialized test called genomic sequencing, which is not available except in hospitals, and does not change the course of treatment. For information regarding variants in Texas, click here.
My child is positive with COVID-19, will antibiotics help with COVID-19 or prevent COVID pneumonia?
Antibiotics are wonderful medications when used judiciously and for their specific purpose. However, antibiotics are only effective to treat bacterial infections. COVID-19 is a viral infection so antibiotics are not an effective treatment. Additionally, because of concerns for the development of antibiotic resistant organisms, it is also not recommended to take them as a preventative measure.
For more information on antibiotics and why they aren’t prescribed for COVID-19, click here.
My child has COVID-19. Do I need to worry about MIS-C, the inflammatory condition I’ve seen on the news?
It is not determined that COVID-19 causes MIS-C (Multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children), but there have been a few *very rare* cases of children who have had COVID-19 that develop the condition. As mentioned before, most children without other health complications experience minimal symptoms, which are frequently similar to a bad cold or flu virus.
For information on the prevalence of MIS-C in Texas and the Central Texas region, please click here.
The CDC has created a handout for parents that can be referenced here. For more information on MIS-C, please click here.