The beginning of the year brought a big jump in the number of infected people and a worsening of the epidemiological situation. Doctors pointed out that we are currently in the fifth wave of the pandemic, and what is different this time is that the number of infected children is increasing. Have we lost control of the pandemic and are there any dangers for the youngest?
Since the beginning of the year, the pediatric ward of the Bijeljina Health Center has recorded an increase in the number of children infected with the coronavirus. For that reason, a children’s clinic was established.
“We have had an increased number of examinations in the children’s dispensary in the last ten days. The main indications are clear secretions, fever, and the fact that someone in the house has similar symptoms,“ stated Stojanka Skoric, a pediatrician.
“Unfortunately, we have seen in the past two weeks that, when we make comparison with the previous strains, we have a shift to the left, towards a younger age. The good news is that toddlers are going through a lighter clinical picture for now,“told dr Mladen Grujicic, an epidemiologist.
“For now, they can be adequately cared for in the pediatric service, so we do not have an increased number of children who require hospitalization, “ told dr Mladen Grujicic, an epidemiologist.
The epidemiological situation throughout Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) has worsened. Doctors do not expect the peak of the pandemic until the end of this month.
“Most likely, the gathering around the holidays led to the spread of the virus. In most cases, younger people are infected with some milder symptoms, but, there is also pneumonia,“ said Snjezana Djurovic, Visegrad Health Center.
“In Central Bosnia Canton (CBC), there are 912 people who are positive in the county (the biggest number so far). We think that schools should continue classes, we monitor the situation in hospitals, the hospital system, there is a deterioration of active and hospitalized,“ noted Anto Matic, Minister of Health and Social Policy CBC.
Despite the worsening of the epidemiological situation, the Ministry of Education and Culture of the Republika Srpska (RS)expects that the second semester in schools will begin as planned on January 24th. On the other hand, the recommendation of the Entity Institute of Public Health is to limit gatherings by the end of January.
This has already been done in the Federation of BiH (FBiH).
“A new strain of the virus has developed and more and more people are getting sick. A month or two ago, a new strain was announced that is different, more infectious, the infection is spreading faster, and the incubation period has been shortened from five to three or four. What is good about it, but it must not be a reason to relax, is that it is about lighter clinical pictures,“explained Antonija Verhaz, an infectologist.
Wearing masks and vaccinations are the main protection measures. This time the emphasis is on protecting the youngest.
“I would ask parents to reduce contacts, gatherings, to protect children, especially newborns and infants. This virus is common in children under four and these children are somehow the most endangered,“ said dr Stojanka Skoric, a pediatrician.
One of the measures to combat the virus is the introduction of a single covid certificate in BiH, which, according to the authorities, could be implemented by the end of the month.