**Clinically extremely vulnerable children and young people (0 to 18)
Specialists in paediatric medicine have reviewed the evidence on the level of risk posed to children and young people from COVID-19. The latest evidence indicates that the risk of serious illness for most children and young people is low.
All children and young people currently identified as Clinically Extremely Vulnerable, and advised to shield, should continue to do so until 31 July, when the government will pause shielding for everyone.
All decisions on whether children and young people should be removed from the shielded patient list (and therefore will not be advised to shield again in future if transmission starts to increase significantly) should be based on a consultation with a paediatric specialist or GP who will be best placed to determine the most appropriate care. Gov.uk advises that a paediatric specialist or GP will be in touch over the summer to have these discussions.
Returning to school
children who are clinically extremely vulnerable can go back to school (when the rest of their class goes back)
This advice is of a general nature and should be treated as a guide.
This does not replace any local public health measures put in place to protect the local population. If there is an outbreak of COVID-19 within your area, please follow any guidance set out locally or any specific law which applies to the area you live in .If local restrictions are in place in your area, please visit local lockdowns guidance
This is a recording of the talks delivered by Dr Jeng Haw Cheng, paediatric gastroenterology grid ST8 at Alder Hey Children’s Hospital, and Dr Hina Rizvi, paediatric gastroenterology SPIN ST7 at Birmingham Heartlands Hospital at the trainees’ meeting on 19 August 2020. Video editing by Helen Vanker.
These videos will be open access until the end of October.
I hope that since my last bulletin, on 28th July, you have remained safe and well and have had time to rest.
Covid -19 has been the focus of bulletins this year, the pandemic having dominated all aspects of life – home, work, school, and healthcare.
We couldn’t foresee that in March, COVID would continue to be with us for so much longer than we thought.
Life has been busy with many challenges, but also with opportunities to reset the way we work.
I trust that you have all been getting to grips with restoring delivery of your services as best as your local resources will allow and that teams continue to be resilient in dealing with patients’ needs and concerns. I hope that trainees are supported to get back on track to achieve their ARCP targets.
One of the spin offs from the pandemic is the way we deliver education. The BSPGHAN Education series is live and also available on demand. The series of twice weekly live webinars offers CPD for trainees, associates and all members and usually a chance to join a friendly chat with colleagues.
Please do get in touch with myself or a council member if you need a discussion about your service or any items below-
1. ‘Shielding’ advice for children and young people
While up to up to 76 000 children were initially shielded at the start of the pandemic, the target was reduced to about 10 000. BSPGHAN this week will be contributing towards updating the national advice with the RCPCH and other key stakeholders. See information on which paediatric patient groups should be advised to ‘shield’ during the COVID-19 outbreak. We have an opportunity to discuss the definition of children who might be seen as clinically extremely vulnerable. As increasingly reassuring data becomes available, the definition includes far fewer children, but it would be good to have feedback from members, as to which children and young people in our speciality remain clinically extremely vulnerable. It seems likely to be restricted to those children and young people who are peri transplant or have specific immune deficiencies, but please do feedback.
Changes in clinical practice emerged:- opportunities to redesign some outpatient services using remote consultations and clinical triage may already be altering endoscopy practice to lower volume- higher yield. While endoscopy was restored in children by July to 40% of pre Covid levels, there is a backlog of patients waiting, with concern about variation in activity and unintended harm due to long waits. Endoscopy activity in children is being highlighted to regional commissioning teams in order to support the reduction in the backlog of priority procedures.
3. RCPCH Conference 2020 online – FREE to register NOW. BSPGHAN speciality session is October 22nd 09.00-12.00
Please remember to book your study leave to join the virtual BSPGHAN Annual Meeting and AGM.
The meeting will provide a unique opportunity to show case the activity of BSPGHAN’s Working Groups, sessions for the Trainees, PEGHAN and Associate members and a virtual platform for posters.
The importance of the meeting in allowing colleagues to socialise and link up is important we hope that the sessions can be arranged to allow this aspect to continue.
We have delayed the BSPGHAN Annual Meeting in Birmingham to January 2022
5. RCPCH/BSPGHAN Clinical Standards Audit
The audit is up and running again. We have a registered PGHAN Audit lead in around 60% of potential Health Boards and Trusts and so please support the request to bring up the percentage up as high as we can before we start the data capture phase soon.