Children and teens

Children and young people are not at risk of severe infection from the new coronavirus (COVID-19) and little is known about serious illnesses due to the virus among them. If children or young people get infected most of them experience mild symptoms.  Hringurinn Children's Hospital has issued advice about the virus in relation to children and youth.

My Hero is You, Storybook for children on Covid-19 for parents and children to read together. This book was a project developed by the Inter-Agency Standing Committee Reference Group on Mental Health and Psychosocial Support in Emergency Settings (IASC MHPSS RG)

Children and the ban on gatherings

Schools, pre-schools, and athletic organisations have carefully organised their schedules for the days and weeks to come in order to comply with the Minister of Health and Social Security’s instructions restricting gatherings. Restrictions on school activities are lifted as of Monday, 4 May 2020. Pre-schools and primary schools will resume normal activities, and students will not be subject to distance requirements or limits on the number who may gather together. This applies as well to pre-school and primary school children’s extracurricular activities, such as athletics, youth groups and recreational activities, and music studies. Upper secondary and university-level students may begin meeting in their school buildings but must comply with rules limiting groups to 500 persons in the same space (from June 15) and must maintain a distance of at least two metres from one another when possible.

Children and teenagers should always wash their hands thoroughly, both before they meet with friends and after they come home.
Families are encouraged to use technology to maintain good contact with loved ones who are at increased risk of catching COVID-19 — particularly elderly people and those with underlying illnesses.
This is also a good opportunity to teach children to write letters, which will help them to practise handwriting and spelling, use their imagination, and think in “problem-solving mode” about interactions with loved ones.

Common questions and answers:

What is the coronavirus? The coronavirus is a type of virus that can cause illness, especially with those who are not well or already have medical conditions. Krakkafréttir made an informative segment about the virus. Furthermore, THROSKAHJALP - National Association of Intellectual Disabilities has issued easy-to-read information about the coronavirus.
What kind of illness does it cause? The coronavirus causes an illness that is very similar to the common cold, such as coughing, fever and bone aches. The virus can cause more serious illness, such as pneumonia. If someone is thought to be sick, please contact the helpline for advice at 1700 (+354 544 4113 if calling on a foreign line) or your health clinic by phone.
Is the coronavirus dangerous? Very few of those who are infected by the virus get seriously ill, but everyone that does get sick needs to be monitored. Most people get better and a lot of people don’t get very ill.
Could I get the coronavirus? Anyone that has been around someone that is already ill with the coronavirus COVID-19 or has touched someone that is ill, slept in the same bed or been in the same house, could have a chance of getting ill.

We can all help to slow down the outbreak of COVID-19 by:

Washing our hands frequently with water and soap for at least 20 seconds. It is also recommended to use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
Covering our nose and mouth with a flexed elbow or paper tissue when coughing or sneezing and dispose immediately of the tissue afterward.
Being mindful not to touch our face with our hands, especially our eyes, mouth and nose. These are the gateways for the virus into our bodies.
Avoiding hugging, kissing and cuddling – we can smile instead.
Taking good care of ourselves and being careful about relations with others that might have a bigger risk of getting infected.

The Icelandic government, doctors, police and the Red Cross and many more are working together to make sure that as few people as possible get affected by the virus in Iceland, and those affected get the best medical treatment as possible.

Related content