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Incidence of COVID-19 in Pediatric Surgical Patients Among 3 US Children’s Hospitals

Educational Objective
To understand the rate of COVID-19 infection amongst children after pediatric surgery
1 Credit CME

The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic continues to spread, with more than 4.6 million confirmed cases worldwide as of May 19, 2020. Children appear less susceptible, with the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention reporting that children constitute only 2.16% of confirmed cases.1 This may underestimate the true incidence of COVID-19 in children. Children are more likely to be asymptomatic or mildly symptomatic and thus less likely to be tested. The purpose of this study was to determine the incidence of COVID-19 in pediatric patients presenting for surgery at 3 tertiary care children’s hospitals across the United States.

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CME Disclosure Statement: Unless noted, all individuals in control of content reported no relevant financial relationships. If applicable, all relevant financial relationships have been mitigated.

Article Information

Corresponding Author: Apurva S. Shah, MD, MBA, Division of Orthopaedic Surgery, 3401 Civic Center Blvd, 2nd Floor Wood Center, Philadelphia, PA 19104 (shaha6@email.chop.edu).

Published Online: June 4, 2020. doi:10.1001/jamasurg.2020.2588

Author Contributions: Drs Lin and Shah had full access to all of the data in the study and take responsibility for the integrity of the data and the accuracy of the data analysis.

Concept and design: Lin, Blumberg, Shah.

Acquisition, analysis, or interpretation of data: All authors.

Drafting of the manuscript: Lin, Shah.

Critical revision of the manuscript for important intellectual content: All authors.

Statistical analysis: Talwar.

Administrative, technical, or material support: All authors.

Supervision: Lin, Blumberg, Shah.

Conflict of Interest Disclosures: None reported.

Additional Contributions: We acknowledge Philip D. Bailey, DO; David E. Cohen, MD; and Charles Dean Kurth, MD, for their role in developing a universal screening program for severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 in children undergoing surgery at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. No compensation was received for their role in this investigation.

References
1.
Wu  Z , McGoogan  JM .  Characteristics of and important lessons from the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) outbreak in China: summary of a report of 72 314 cases from the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention.   JAMA. Published online February 24, 2020. doi:10.1001/jama.2020.2648PubMedGoogle Scholar
2.
Kam  KQ , Yung  CF , Cui  L ,  et al.  A well infant with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) with high viral load.   Clin Infect Dis. Published online February 28, 2020. doi:10.1093/cid/ciaa201PubMedGoogle Scholar
3.
Dong  Y , Mo  X , Hu  Y ,  et al.  Epidemiology of COVID-19 among children in China.   Pediatrics. Published online March 16, 2020. doi:10.1542/peds.2020-0702PubMedGoogle Scholar
4.
Sutton  D , Fuchs  K , D’Alton  M , Goffman  D .  Universal screening for SARS-CoV-2 in women admitted for delivery.   N Engl J Med. Published online April 13, 2020. doi:10.1056/NEJMc2009316PubMedGoogle Scholar
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