Philadelphia and its surrounding areas have received the stay at home order on March 17 due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) has witnessed a decrease in healthcare visits both for outpatients and hospitalized patients.
David A. Hill said, “Pollution and respiratory viruses, particularly rhinovirus, can worsen asthma symptoms and trigger exacerbations.”
“When we saw this decrease we initially thought it must be some combination of these factors. We were surprised to see that pollution did not actually decline substantially when compared with historical trends in the Philadelphia region as a result of stay-at-home orders.”
“So, we believe this change is more directly a result of infection prevention measures, including wearing a face mask, washing hands frequently, and social distancing. Above all, this paper demonstrates that social distancing is an effective tool in reducing transmission of any virus, whether it’s a coronavirus or an asthma-exacerbating rhinovirus.”
“These findings can help inform how we care for asthma patients, not only during this pandemic, but also after we return to a new normal. Asthma is one of the most common chronic childhood diseases, affecting one out of every 12 school-aged children in the United States. We should explore whether enhanced infection-prevention measures have utility in children with asthma, irrespective of COVID-19.”
About Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia:
Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia was founded in 1855 as the nation’s first pediatric hospital. Through its long-standing commitment to providing exceptional patient care, training new generations of pediatric healthcare professionals, and pioneering major research initiatives, Children’s Hospital has fostered many discoveries that have benefited children worldwide. Its pediatric research program is among the largest in the country. In addition, its unique family-centered care and public service programs have brought the 564-bed hospital recognition as a leading advocate for children and adolescents.