COVID-19 is a disease that can affect your lungs, airways and other organs. Find out the best ways to help your children, family/whānau and yourself in this pandemic. You can also check the section COVID-19 immunisation in children.

Boy with a virus blowing his nose into a tissue

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Copyright: Jean-Paul Chassenet

Children playing soccer

Guidance for children and teens returning to normal activity and sport after having COVID. 

Boy lying down with thermometer in mouth

Most children with COVID-19 will have a mild illness. Find out about how to care for your child at home and when to see a doctor.

A man helps a boy put on a face mask

COVID-19 is airborne and can spread easily from one person to another. Wearing masks and ventilating spaces are key ways to help reduce the spread of COVID-19 and other airborne illnesses. 

Boy with a virus blowing his nose into a tissue

COVID-19 is a disease caused by the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2. It can affect your lungs, airways and other organs. If you or your child have cold, flu or COVID-19 symptoms, stay at home. Call your GP or Healthline on 0800 358 5453 for advice. 

Use a RAT test if your child has COVID-19 symptoms, or any cold or flu symptoms. Free rapid antigen tests (RATs) are widely available.

mother wearing mask breastfeeding baby

If you are COVID-19 positive and caring for a newborn pēpi, there are some things you can do to protect them. Find out what you can do to keep them safe, what you can expect from your maternity carer and what to do if you become quite unwell. 

Girl talking to doctor

Heard talk about genome sequencing and COVID-19 and want to know more? Check out this short animation for tamariki from Māui Studios with support from the University of Otago and the Institute of Environmental Science and Research. It features Koro, a scientist and his granddaughter, Ruia, who is intrigued by science and technology but tired of kōrero about COVID-19.

Family - mother and 5 children sitting on steps

Children and teenagers' emotional wellbeing is better when whānau can get the right support. Kiwi families have access to parenting support to improve emotional wellbeing for our tamariki.

pregnant woman holding stomach

If you're pregnant/hapū, or planning a pregnancy, it is important to have the COVID-19 vaccine. Studies have shown this is safe and better for you and your baby. If you get COVID-19 while you’re pregnant you can become very sick. You can get a COVID-19 vaccine at any stage of your pregnancy. 

animation of proud family after getting vaccinated

Watch a short video in English answering the most common questions about the COVID-19 vaccine.

screenshot image of animated vaccine

Watch a short video in Samoan answering the most common questions about the COVID-19 vaccine.

Graphic with text 'How does the Pfizer vaccine work' and vaccine

Watch a short video in te Reo Māori answering the most common questions about the COVID-19 vaccine.

Photo of baby breastfeeding

There are no safety concerns about getting the COVID-19 vaccine if you're breastfeeding.

Immunisation remains a priority for whānau during the COVID-19 pandemic. You can  protect your child against serious diseases like whooping cough and measles. 

A Mayo Clinic (USA) video which prepares children for a COVID-19 PCR nasal swab test and helps ease some of their possible fear and anxiety. This video is suitable for children as young as 4 years old. Note the video shows a PCR test, not a RAT test. Check the information on rapid antigen tests (RATs) if that's what your child is having.

Hands being washed under a tap

If your child or you have cold, flu or COVID-19 symptoms, stay at home. Call your GP clinic or Healthline on 0800 358 5453 for advice.

Graphic of COVID-19 symptoms

How to recognise possible symptoms of COVID-19. If you or your child have cold, flu or COVID-19 symptoms, stay home and call your doctor or Healthline on 0800 358 5453 for advice about getting a free test.

Mother with newborn baby

COVID-19 is now established in New Zealand so there is always a chance of being exposed. If you are pregnant, find out what you can do to help keep you and your baby safe and what to expect from your maternity carers.

Baby breastfeeding

If you have COVID-19, you can still breastfeed your baby. There is no evidence of mothers passing on COVID-19 to babies through breastfeeding or through breastmilk. A breastfeeding māmā who has a COVID infection needs to take hygiene precautions. This includes hand washing and mask-wearing while breastfeeding and caring for pēpi.

Most children who get COVID-19 will have mild symptoms and get better quickly. But a small number of older children may have symptoms that last longer. This is sometimes called post-COVID-19 condition or long COVID. Find out what is known about long COVID and how to care for a child who is taking longer to get better. 

Sick child lying in hospital bed

Multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C) is a huge over-reaction in the infection-fighting system (immune system). The syndrome usually happens 2 to 6 weeks after a child has had COVID-19. MIS-C can cause severe inflammation in many parts of the body. 

A section of the KidsHealth COVID-19 QR code poster

To give others easy access to all KidsHealth's COVID-19 content, you can share a QR code poster. Anyone can scan the QR code with their phone and go straight to the KidsHealth COVID-19 section.