Sun exposure for kids urged with conditions

A PARTY-LIST  House leader on Tuesday asked the Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) to allow children to go outside andget some sun and exercise, provided they are wearing masks, practicing social distancing and under adult supervision.

House Asstant Majority Leader and ACT-CIS party-list Rep. Niña Taduran said he believes most of the children are already experiencing cabin fever after almost three months of being locked up in their homes due to coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

“Children need sun exposure for Vitamin D and stronger immune system. Although they have their gadgets to play at home, children are happier when they can walk, run and ride their bikes outside.  the psychological development and well-being of a locked up child is not healthy,” said Taduran.

Dr. Kellyn Conde Sy, a Molecular Biology and Biotechnology graduate of the University of the Philippines (UP), said the lockdown may lead children to depression and decreased capability to react to real-life situations.

Taduran said the IATF can limit the number of hours or schedule alternate days of playing outside and adults should always be present to supervise.

Aside from exercise and playing, Taduran said children should be allowed to go out with their parents or guardians for essential matters like visiting their pediatricians for consultations and vaccinations, eye refraction and eyeglasses measurement in time for the opening of virtual classes.

Taduran also asked IATF to issue uniform guidelines regarding this to avoid confusion in General Community Quarantine (GCQ) and Modified General Community Quarantine (MGCQ) areas.

“The children’s mental health is affected by this pandemic. They feel isolated, depressed and scared, especially those who have challenging home environments. With the observance of health protocols, strict adult guidance and short hours of outdoor activities, I don’t think children’s health will be compromised,” said Taduran.