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Important News

From The American Academy Of Pediatrics

November 2, 2020
Evaluation and Management of the Infant Exposed to HIV in the United States

Pediatricians play a crucial role in optimizing the prevention of perinatal transmission of HIV infection. Pediatricians provide antiretroviral prophylaxis to infants born to women with HIV type 1 (HIV) infection during pregnancy and to those whose mother’s status was first identified during labor or delivery. Infants whose mothers have an undetermined HIV status should be tested for HIV infection within the boundaries of state laws and receive presumptive HIV therapy if the results are positive. Pediatricians promote avoidance of postnatal HIV transmission by advising mothers with HIV not to breastfeed. Pediatricians test the infant exposed to HIV for determination of HIV infection and monitor possible short- and long-term toxicity from antiretroviral exposure. Finally, pediatricians support families living with HIV by providing counseling to parents or caregivers as an important component of care.

November 2, 2020
Neonatal Opioid Withdrawal Syndrome

The opioid crisis has grown to affect pregnant women and infants across the United States, as evidenced by rising rates of opioid use disorder among pregnant women and neonatal opioid withdrawal syndrome among infants. Across the country, pregnant women lack access to evidence-based therapies, including medications for opioid use disorder, and infants with opioid exposure frequently receive variable care. In addition, public systems, such as child welfare and early intervention, are increasingly stretched by increasing numbers of children affected by the crisis. Systematic, enduring, coordinated, and holistic approaches are needed to improve care for the mother-infant dyad. In this statement, we provide an overview of the effect of the opioid crisis on the mother-infant dyad and provide recommendations for management of the infant with opioid exposure, including clinical presentation, assessment, treatment, and discharge.

November 2, 2020
Routine Neuroimaging of the Preterm Brain

Neuroimaging of the preterm infant is a common assessment performed in the NICU. Timely and focused studies can be used for diagnostic, therapeutic, and prognostic information. However, significant variability exists among neonatal units as to which modalities are used and when imaging studies are obtained. Appropriate timing and selection of neuroimaging studies can help identify neonates with brain injury who may require therapeutic intervention or who may be at risk for neurodevelopmental impairment. This clinical report reviews the different modalities of imaging broadly available to the clinician. Evidence-based indications for each modality, optimal timing of examinations, and prognostic value are discussed.

October 1, 2020
Recommendations for Prevention and Control of Influenza in Children, 2020-2021

This statement updates the recommendations of the American Academy of Pediatrics for the routine use of influenza vaccine and antiviral medications in the prevention and treatment of influenza in children during the 2020–2021 season.

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends routine influenza immunization of all children without medical contraindications, starting at 6 months of age. Influenza vaccination is an important intervention to protect vulnerable populations and reduce the burden of respiratory illnesses during the severe acute respiratory syndrome-coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) pandemic. Any licensed, recommended, age-appropriate vaccine available can be administered, without preference for one product or formulation over another.

Antiviral treatment of influenza with any licensed, recommended, age-appropriate influenza antiviral medication is recommended for children with suspected or confirmed influenza who are hospitalized, have severe or progressive disease, or have underlying conditions that increase their risk of complications of influenza. Antiviral treatment may be considered for any previously healthy, symptomatic outpatient not at high risk for influenza complications in whom an influenza diagnosis is confirmed or suspected, if treatment can be initiated within 48 hours of illness onset, and for children whose siblings or household contacts either are younger than 6 months or have a high-risk condition that predisposes them to complications of influenza.

September 1, 2020
Participation of Children and Adolescents in Live Crisis Drills and Exercises

Children and adolescents should be included in exercises and drills to the extent that their involvement advances readiness to meet their unique needs in the event of a crisis and/or furthers their own preparedness or resiliency. However, there is also a need to be cautious about the potential psychological risks and other unintended consequences of directly involving children in live exercises and drills. These risks and consequences are especially a concern when children are deceived and led to believe there is an actual attack and not a drill and/or for high-intensity active shooter drills. High-intensity active shooter drills may involve the use of real weapons, gunfire or blanks, theatrical makeup to give a realistic image of blood or gunshot wounds, predatory and aggressive acting by the individual posing to be the shooter, or other means to simulate an actual attack, even when participants are aware that it is a drill. This policy statement outlines some of the considerations regarding the prevalent practice of live active shooter drills in schools, including the recommendations to eliminate children’s involvement in high-intensity drills and exercises (with the possible exception of adolescent volunteers), prohibit deception in drills and exercises, and ensure appropriate accommodations during drills and exercises based on children’s unique vulnerabilities.