Since many people spend 2020 distancing themselves physically and avoiding social events, many feel like a return to normal this summer.
The companies reopen, mandates for social distancing end, and many summer camps reopen for children.
However, recent COVID-19 outbreaks in a summer camp in Illinois and one in Texas have parents wondering if they send their children this year back to camp.
What parents ought to know, we spoke to experts.
What is the risk that this year the children will be sent to the summer camp?
Dr. Gopi Desai, a pediatrician with New York-Presbyterian Medical Group Queens, said, “I think the greatest takeover is that the Pandemic hasn’t ended. It was a feeling over recent weeks that the pandemic was over, but the pandemic is not over with the new delta variant and new outbreaks.“
In June in Illinois, this certainly was felt. More than 80 teens and adults tested for coronavirus after attending camp at Crossing Camp in Rushville. There was no check of personnel or campers’ vaccination status and no masks were required indoors in the camp.
One young adult without vaccination finally went to the hospital.
After 125 adults and children developed COVID-19 in a church camp, another summer camp in Texas this week.
Kids under 12 years of age cannot be vaccinated yet. It is important to remember.
The transmission of children into camps without vaccination or a mask is a risk, as it has always been a risk for unvaccinated persons to congregate both indoor and in groups.
Can I send my kids this year to the summer camp?
For each person and family, the decision to send children to the summer camp this year will be different. The best way to make a decision is for the benefits to be weighed against the risks.
The return of the summer camp means for many parents and guardians, another way to make childcare affordable in homes where nobody stays at home during the day. It can be an enormous advantage.
Some questions may include whether someone else is in a household at high risk and whether your child will interact with other children or adults who are at great risk or not.
Furthermore, persons living in areas with high vaccine rates or in areas where the virus is spreading more quickly may wish to think of keeping children too young for home vaccination.
How can my children safely go to the summer camp?
Unlike last summer, even for people who have not yet been vaccinated, experts know so much more about staying safe this summer.
For example, staying outdoors, wear masks, and remain socially distant are three of the most effective ways of reducing the risk of communication.
“If this summer you have children who will benefit from camping, put them in the safest circumstances possible,” Desai said. “This involves outdoor activities, camps requiring or requesting the vaccination of staff, and camps in which the use of masks is a possibility.“
Naturally, it is the best way to safeguard everyone at home and in the camp to ensure your children are vaccinated whenever it is possible.