A child who traveled to Hawaii with his parents died from COVID-19, the Hawaii Department of Health announced on Tuesday, marking the state’s first pediatric coronavirus-related death.

The boy, who was between the ages of 0-10 years old and had underlying health conditions, developed COVID-19 symptoms shortly after arriving on the island while on a trip with his parents. He was taken to a hospital where he later died, a news release from Hawaii health officials said.

Both of the child’s parents were fully vaccinated before making the trip.

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FILE – People enjoy the beach at the Kapahulu groin in Waikiki on Friday, Oct. 16, 2020 in Honolulu, HI amid an ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

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So far, Hawaii has reported a total of 32,041 COVID-19 cases and 479 total deaths, according to the state health department website.

As of April 22, more than 3.71 million children had tested positive for COVID-19 since the onset of the pandemic. “After increases in newly reported cases in the past couple of weeks, we have seen a slight decrease in new cases this week – nearly 80,000 new child cases,” according to the American Academy of Pediatrics and the Children’s Hospital Association (AAP).

Deaths due to the novel coronavirus in children are rare. A total of 0.00%-0.03% of all child COVID-19 cases result in death, according to the AAP.

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“At this time, it still appears that severe illness due to COVID-19 is rare among children. However, there is an urgent need to collect more data on longer-term impacts of the pandemic on children, including ways the virus may harm the long-term physical health of infected children, as well as its emotional and mental health effects,” the AAP said.

While children are at less risk of developing severe symptoms due to COVID-19, a rare inflammatory syndrome — called multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children, or MIS-C — has been linked to COVID-19.

“MIS-C is a condition where different body parts can become inflamed, including the heart, lungs, kidneys, brain, skin, eyes, or gastrointestinal organs. Children with MIS-C may have a fever and various symptoms, including abdominal (gut) pain, vomiting, diarrhea, neck pain, rash, bloodshot eyes, or feeling extra tired.” according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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As of March 29, 3,185 total cases of MIS-C and 36 deaths had been reported in the U.S. as a result of MIS-C, according to the CDC.

Upticks in cases

I have been on anxiety medications, and I have been receiving therapy and job coaching, as well. Despite all this, I’m facing pervasive burnout and desperately need a break from work. However, I am trying to save my leave for an eventual trip to India, and I don’t want to upset my manager by taking too many breaks. I have tried to be transparent with my manager about my condition and my plans, but I am not getting the support I would have expected.

Can you please advise me on actions I can take to better handle these conditions?

Karla: One of the cruelest legacies of the coronavirus pandemic is that it has physically cut us off from loved ones when we most need to seek and share comfort with them. An added cruelty is that we’re expected to continue functioning and paying bills as though nothing were wrong.

In your case — and I’m speculating here, so feel free to disregard if I’m off base — add the background noise of being a noncitizen of South Asian descent in a country where xenophobic, White supremacist rhetoric and violence are at a fever pitch. Not to mention the constant threat of being expelled from this country as soon as you stop generating profits for your employer.

That is a horrifying amount of grief, stress and fear to be carrying even without the threat of covid-19. No wonder you can’t focus.

When you’re buried in conflicting emotions, stressors and fears, all you can do is triage what you can and can’t control. Another position with a more understanding boss would be great — but that option is largely outside your control, and your focus would still be hampered by covid stress, plus having to learn a new job.

Your current job is the one thing you have some degree of influence over. And, after your health, it’s also the thing you can least afford to lose.

First, accept the unfortunate reality that you cannot expect more support from your boss, and set aside further mention of nonwork matters. (Exception: If you’re establishing the need for a legally protected accommodation or benefit such as job-protected medical leave, then you may need to speak up explicitly about your mental health and provide documentation from your doctor. An employment lawyer can advise you on when that may be necessary.)

Next you must find a way to compartmentalize and focus your limited energies on doing the tasks your boss cares most about — stuff that keeps you from getting fired. If you’re working from home, you may have to find ways to artificially flip your mental switch to work mode — taking a walk before settling at your desk, or putting on an ironed button-down shirt, or breaking your day into 45-minute “sprints” of work. Your coach may have more suggestions.

Outside of work, here are some tips I have heard and used to stave off despair: