CARING for Children with COVID efforts aim to better understand SARS-CoV-2 infection, which leads to COVID, in children. The collaboration also allows the supporting institutes to coordinate research related to COVID in children and to capitalize on well-established infrastructure.

CARING studies will answer the following research questions:

  • Why are some children more likely than others to get infected with SARS-CoV-2?
  • Why do different children show different symptoms of COVID?
  • Why do some children who become infected with SARS-CoV-2 have more severe illness, like multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C)?
  • What are the long-term outcomes for children who have become infected with SARS-CoV-2?


CARING Cohort Studies

The CARING for Children with COVID program aligns multiple cohort studies to improve understanding of the effects of SARS-CoV-2 infection and MIS-C on children. Using common clinical elements among the protocols makes data integration possible and helps accelerate analysis. Additional data collection will improve understanding of the immunology and multiple organ systems involved in responding to SARS-CoV-2 infection.

Current CARING cohort studies include the following:

Long-TerM OUtcomes after the Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome In Children (MUSIC)
Funded by NHLBI and leveraging the Pediatric Heart Network (PHN), this study focuses on cardiovascular complications of MIS-C, but also collects data on all aspects of childhood and adolescent health in affected participants.

Pharmacokinetics, Pharmacodynamics, and Safety Profile of Understudied Drugs Administered to Children per Standard of Care (POP02)
Funded by NICHD and leveraging the Pediatric Trials Network, this study focuses on understanding the treatment of children diagnosed with COVID-19 or MIS-C with medicines that have shown promise in adults with COVID-19.

Pediatric Research Immune Network on SARS-CoV-2 and MIS-C (PRISM)
Sponsored and funded by NIAID, this study aims to evaluate the short- and long-term health outcomes of SARS-CoV-2 infection in children, including MIS-C, and to characterize the immunologic pathways associated with different disease presentations and outcomes.

Learn more about the networks conducting CARING cohort studies on the About page of this website.

Other CARING Research

Predicting Viral-Associated Inflammatory Disease Severity in Children with Laboratory Diagnostics and Artificial Intelligence (PreVAIL kIds)

Supported through NIH’s Rapid Acceleration of Diagnostics – radical (RADxSM-rad) initiative, the focus of PreVAIL kIds is to develop innovative approaches for understanding the underlying factors that influence the range of symptoms present in children infected with SARS-CoV-2. Research will include studies of genetic, immune, viral, environmental, and other factors that influence the severity of childhood COVID-19 and will -help understand risk factors for developing MIS-C. Researchers will rely on artificial intelligence and machine learning to categorize the data they acquire to understand the disease patterns. Once biomarkers are identified, the goal is to test these approaches in children from diverse backgrounds and geographic areas. Awards for PreVAIL kIds were issued in December 2020.

Data Science: CARING Cloud-based Data Coordination

CARING for Children with COVID is also supporting the collection of a core set of clinical data across all protocols to ensure robust and interoperable cloud-based data sharing on three platforms. Leveraging resources developed through the trans-NIH Gabriella Miller Kids First program and NHLBI’s BioData Catalyst, NIH is investing in Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources (FHIR) to enable the exchange of healthcare-related information. These resources will facilitate data analysis between research cohorts, enabling researchers to construct a bigger “virtual” cohort or to identify smaller cohorts or subpopulations to answer specific research questions.

Datasets on these platforms will be made widely available to allow more researchers to conduct additional analyses and make more discoveries. Some early data are expected to become available in the first half of 2021.

Scientists interested in using CARING data should explore the following platforms to learn more: