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Crisis centre responds to Kawasaki disease concerns

During Thursday morning’s media conference by the Belgian national crisis centre virologist Prof Steven Van Gucht responded to concerns about the partial return to school on 18 May and reports of Kawasaki disease.

Several cases have been recorded in children in Belgium in recent days.  The disease causes inflammation in blood vessels (swelling and reddening). Children may get a temperature, develop a red rash, vomit and feel unwell.

Prof Van Gucht says the disease has been in the news because it may be triggered by coronavirus. 

“It’s important to stress this is a very rare disease.  We do not know with certainty that it is linked to coronavirus.  It can also be triggered by other viruses.”

“It shouldn’t make people worried now schools are reopening.  Paediatricians confirm it’s safe to return to school”.

In a press statement published today Belgian paediatricians stress that children can go to school safely.

“It is with confidence that we say it is safe for all children, apart from a few exceptions, to return to school if basis hygienic measures adapted to each age category are observed.”

“The disadvantages linked to an extended quarantine do not weigh up against the advantages of a return to school.  Education is the basic right of every child and school plays a crucial role.”

“It remains important to contact your family doctor or paediatrician immediately if a child gets a temperature or is lethargic or unwell.