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Low burden on pediatric health care in Stockholm due to COVID-19 infections

We can now conclude that the COVID-19 related morbidity among children during the two most intense months of SARS-CoV-2 transmission in Stockholm was low, despite the strategy to keep preschools and primary schools open.

A total of 63 children tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 while admitted to one of the pediatric hospitals in Stockholm during the period from 13th March to 14th May. Almost half of the children had COVID-19 as their primary diagnosis, of which all recovered without any complications. Fourteen children presented with other conditions where the SARS-CoV-2 infection may have contributed to the child’s need for hospital care while 19 children were admitted due to non-infectious reasons and were found to be positive in routine testing.

A handful of children required oxygen therapy and one child with an underlying condition required a short period of intensive care. One child with complex underlying disease died after arriving at the hospital with cardiac arrest. The child subsequently tested positive for SARS-CoV 2 but the relevance for the outcome is unclear since other pathogens were also identified in post-mortem testing.

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