Are Children Coronavirus Super-Spreaders? Recent Studies Explain
Children and Coronavirus
As the country hotly deliberates how to safely reopen daycares and schools amid the coronavirus pandemic that’s completely turned our lives upside down, new emerging studies come with troubling information.
The studies, one carried out in South Korea and the other one in Chicago’s Lurie Children’s Hospital, back up the same hypothesis: children can get infected with SARS-CoV-2 and can efficiently spread it to other people. In fact, according to the research team at Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago, not only do older children and adults had on par amounts of the viral genetic material but children under 5 had 10 to 100 times more viral genetic load compared to older children and adults.
“People thought maybe [young children] can’t get infected, and that is not the case. They definitely do get infected,” informed Dr. Taylor Heald-Sargent, a pediatric infectious diseases specialist involved in the study at Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago. “And once they get infected, they have rip-roaring amounts of virus.”
In support of this theory, a recent study of 47 COVID-19 infected children aged 1 to 11 conducted in Germany, revealed that even asymptomatic children had similar or higher viral genetic material compared to adults.