News News Important Update - Shielding Guidelines The Government have confirmed revised amendments to the shielding guidelines for children and young people [0-18 years]. A Press Release issued by The Department of Health and Social Care [DHSC] says, ‘Independent evidence from the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (RCPCH), working with specialists in paediatric medicine, shows the risk of serious illness for children and young people is low and only those with the most severe conditions should now be considered clinically extremely vulnerable. Children will only be removed from the shielded patient list by their GP or specialist doctor following consultation with the child and their family. Specialists and GPs will be asked to contact children and their families to discuss this over the summer, so families do not need to take any immediate action. The latest guidance for families is in line with the recommendations from the RCPCH and is as follows: A small group of children who receive specialist care in hospitals may need to carry on shielding following a consultation with their doctor. This includes those receiving cancer care or those at risk of severe infection due to an immunodeficiency. Most other children who were initially identified as being clinically extremely vulnerable will no longer be considered at highest risk. In particular, children and young people who are cared for just by their GP are very unlikely to need to continue to shield in the long-term. This includes children with conditions such as asthma, diabetes, epilepsy and kidney disease.' The new information on the risk in children comes at the same time as broader shielding advice is relaxed, advising those shielding that they may now, if they wish, gather in groups of up to six outdoors and form support bubbles with another household if they live on their own or are a single parent. Children and young people should continue to shield until 31 July. From Saturday 1 August, the guidance will then be paused so clinically extremely vulnerable people of all ages will no longer be advised to shield.’ More information Royal College of Paediatric and Child Health (RCPCH) guidance: https://www.rcpch.ac.uk/resources/covid-19-shielding-guidance-children-young-people#introduction Shielding guidance: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-on-shielding-and-protecting-extremely-vulnerable-persons-from-covid-19#history Education guidance: https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus/education-and-childcare Mental health and wellbeing advice: https://www.nhs.uk/oneyou/every-mind-matters/ As always, Solving Kids’ Cancer recommends you speak directly with your child’s oncologist if you have specific queries not answered by the above links. We will continue to share updated COVID-19 related guidance and information through our dedicated COVID-19 web page coming soon!