GENEVA, May 15 (Xinhua) -- World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said on Friday at a virtual press conference that multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children may be related to COVID-19.

He told reporters that in the past weeks, reports from Europe and North America have described a small number of children being admitted to intensive care units with a multisystem inflammatory condition with some features similar to Kawasaki disease and toxic shock syndrome.

"Initial reports hypothesise that this syndrome may be related to COVID-19," He said, adding that it is critical to urgently and carefully characterize this clinical syndrome to understand causality and to describe treatment interventions.

The WHO chief said that his organization has developed a preliminary case definition and a case report form for Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children.

He called on all clinicians worldwide to work with their national authorities and the WHO to be on the alert and better understand this syndrome in children.