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COVID-19 faqs

general FAQs

my child has symptoms of COVID-19. Should they be tested?

If your child has symptoms of COVID-19 or you believe they have been exposed, talk to your child's doctor to discuss options. If you can't get in to see your child's doctor, you can also schedule a video visit with Dayton Children's Kids Express to speak with a pediatric nurse practitioner. 

If your child is sick, they should not go to school or daycare. Depending on the circumstances, they may need to stay home and away from others for up to 14 days. There is no different treatment for COVID-19, unless symptoms become severe.

If you develop trouble breathing or a high fever (above 104 degrees F), go to the emergency department. These are severe symptoms that need immediate treatment.

who is being tested for COVID-19 at Dayton Children's? can I bring my child there for testing?

Dayton Children's has two options for COVID-19 testing – antigen and PCR. 

  • A provider’s order is needed for PCR testing.
  • An antigen test can be billed through insurance with a physician’s order or paid out-of-pocket with no order. If you wish to pay out-of-pocket, no order is needed and the cost is $60 payable by credit or debit card. 

If you believe your child needs to be tested, please contact your child's primary care physician or schedule a video visit with Dayton Children's Kids Express.

At this time, Dayton Children’s is testing the following patients for COVID-19.

  • Patients requiring anesthesia for a surgery or procedure
  • Patients being admitted to Dayton Children’s
  • Patients who are seen in the emergency department with possible symptoms of COVID-19
  • Patients with a physician order
  • If you do not have a physicians order, you can pay $60 out of pocket at our testing locations for an antigen test. 

Please visit childrensdayton.org/covidtesting for information on our drive thru testing locations. 

what are the symptoms of COVID-19? what should I do if I have these symptoms?

The most common symptoms of COVID-19 are:

  • a dry cough
  • fever
  • shortness of breath

However there are a variety of other symptoms that have been associated with COVID-19 including:

  • severe headache
  • sore throat
  • vomiting
  • diarrhea
  • stomach pain
  • loss of taste or smell.

If you have these symptoms, call your family doctor. If you can't get in to see your child's doctor, you can also schedule a video visit with Dayton Children's Kids Express to speak with a pediatric nurse practitioner. 

Consulting a medical professional will guide you to the appropriate next steps. Those could be recovering at home, getting tested, or going to the emergency department depending on the severity of your symptoms.

how does COVID-19 impact babies, kids and teens? is my child at risk?

Each day, we’re learning more about the COVID-19 virus. Most children have mild symptoms like a cold. In most cases, it seems to impact children and teens much less severely than adults.

In rare cases, children can develop pediatric multisystem inflammatory syndrome (MIS-C), which resembles Kawasaki disease, which would require more intensive treatment and care. This is why it’s important to keep doing what we’re doing to prevent the spread of infection—good hand hygiene, social distancing, etc. If you have any concern about your child, you should check with your pediatrician. 

learn more about COVID-19 and kids

what if my child has a chronic illness, like asthma, diabetes, or cystic fibrosis?

We want to ensure that our families with children who have chronic conditions feel supported during this time. That includes how you can visit with your care team, how to care for your child at home, and providing you resources with more information related to your child’s condition. Our experts have pulled together information as a starting point, but always let us know if you have any questions or concerns.

View more about caring for specific illnesses and specific clinic information as it relates to COVID-19.

how can I prevent COVID-19?

There is currently no vaccine to prevent COVID-19. The best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed. Here are some things you can do to help prevent the spread and being exposed:

  • Wear a mask covering both your mouth and nose when in public or interacting with anyone within six feet. 
  • Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. You can also use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol when your hands are not visibly dirty.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth
  • Stay home, especially when you are sick.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick. If someone in your household is sick, try to have them isolate in a separate bedroom and bathroom, if possible. They should also use a homemade mask or bandana to cover their mouth and nose when other people are in close contact caring for them. The person caring for them can also wear a homemade mask or bandana.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.

For more information, visit the CDC.

what is COVID-19? is it the same as coronavirus?

Coronavirus has been around a long time and has several strains, just like the flu. At the end of 2019, a new type of coronavirus, called COVID-19, began making people sick in China. It has now spread around the world. The symptoms of COVID-19 include fever, cough and trouble breathing. It can be more serious in some people, especially if they are sick or weak.

can a person test negative and later test positive for COVID-19?

If you test negative for COVID-19, it is possible that you were very early in your infection at the time of your specimen collection and that you could test positive later. You also could be exposed later and then develop illness. In other words, a negative test result does not rule out getting sick later.

can I just use an at-home test that I saw for sale on the internet?

At this time, the FDA has not approved any at-home tests for COVID-19. However that may become an option in the future.

if I wear a mask, will it protect me from others' germs?

The primary purpose of a mask is to prevent you from spreading germs to others, however it does offer a small amount of protection for the wearer, as well. Only specially-made masks for health care workers prevent all germs from entering. This is why it is still important to practice social distancing.

Read more FAQs about masks

questions about coronavirus

If you have additional questions about the coronavirus please call your clinic directly, or call our COVID-19 parent hotline at 1-888-746-KIDS (5437) from 8:00 am - 8:00 pm.