Health chiefs have outlined the difference between cold and coronavirus symptoms in a bid to help worried parents and carers.

Winter traditionally brings sniffles and colds but concerns are increased this year due to the coronavirus pandemic, which has forced a number of year groups at schools across the county into isolation after their classmates became infected.

But the usual seasonal rounds of coughs and colds have also started doing the rounds since children returned to school at the start of this month – and with people across the country urged not to book a coronavirus test unnecessarily, it’s important to be able to tell the difference.

Health bosses in Coventry and Warwickshire say that a runny or blocked nose, sneezing or feeling unwell are all symptoms of a common cold – and it’s unlikely your child will be suffering from coronvirus if they have only those symptoms, but do not have a temperature, cough or loss or change in sense of taste or smell.

Colds can be treated by over the counter medicines. If a child has these symptoms, parents and carers can seek advice from a pharmacy, NHS 111 or their GP.

The following symptoms are ones which could indicate if a child has COVID-19:

  • A high temperature
  • A new continuous cough
  • Loss or change in sense of taste or smelll

Dr David Spraggett, GP and Chair at NHS South Warwickshire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) said: “Children can get coronavirus, but they seem to get it less often than adults and it’s usually less serious.

“However, if your child is showing symptoms of COVID-19 it is important that they get a test and stay at home until they receive the result. Anybody living in the same household or support bubble must also self-isolate until you get the result.

“Please only book a test for your child if they develop COVID-19 symptoms. This will help make sure people who need a test can get one.”

Dr Sarah Raistrick, GP and Chair at NHS Coventry and Rugby CCG, added: “We want to reassure parents and families that you local GP practice is here for you and we are open. If you have any concerns about your child’s health, please call your GP practice. We will be able to provide advice over the telephone and if necessary, we will book an appointment to see your child.

“I must ask though, please do not just turn up at your practice, you need to phone us first and we will support you and your family.”

Latest figures

As we reported in our newsletter, cases across Coventry and Warwickshire have risen over the past week.

In fact, according to data from the Public Health England coronavirus dashboard, cases in Coventry rose by 272 while in Warwickshire the figure rose by 216.

This means. collectively, there has been 488 confirmed across the region from September 18 to September 24.

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