NewsLocal News


New COVID-19 related illness has parents and healthcare professionals on alert

Posted at 8:43 PM, May 13, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-13 22:51:01-04

TULSA, Okla. — As some areas in the country are slowly starting to reopen, a new development from the coronavirus pandemic has health officials sending out a warning.

This illness, which is showing up in children, has been named Pediatric Multisystem Inflammitory Syndrome (PMIS). It is shown to have a correlation with COVID-19 that has doctors and parents on alert.

“It does seem like, even though the information is very very new, that it could be be associated with COVID-19," said Dr. Kimberly Martin with Saint Francis and an assistant professor at the University of Oklahoma. "Many of these patients have either had PCR positive for COVID-19, or antibodies for COVID-19."

PMIS has symptoms similar to Kawasaki and toxic shock syndrome has now been discovered in the United States after other countries in the United Kingdom reported cases last week.

The illness is still considered rare, the most cases in the U.S. are in New York, as officials reported around 100 cases with three deaths last week that are linked to the syndrome.

While the Tulsa County Health Department has not confirmed any cases in the area, the team is closely monitoring the situation.

“We utilize sydromatic surveillance so we have a pulse on any health concerns happening with in our hospital system,"said Leanne Stevens, the communications director of the Tulsa County Health Department. "Also, our epidemiologist is monitoring any developments related to COVID-19."

While this new development is concerned for healthcare officials and parents alike, experts say there is no need to panic, instead focus on prevention.

"Really, if we are trying to prevent this syndrome, we need to go back and try to prevent COVID-19 in children," Dr. Martin said. "So, meticulous hand hygiene, cough etiquette, wearing a face-covering when out in public and really trying to reduce the number of times that children need to go out into public."

The Center for Disease Control is expected to release new information and health guidelines regarding PMIS later this week. We will have the latest on air, in our app, and on our here on the website.

Stay in touch with us anytime, anywhere.

Download our free app for Apple and Android and Kindle devices.

Sign up for newsletters emailed to your inbox. Select from these options: Breaking News, Severe Weather, School Closings, Daily Headlines and Daily Forecasts.

Follow us on Twitter

Like us on Facebook