Ted S. Warren | AP
Twelve children who caught Kovid-19 at three childcare centers in Utah tried to spread the virus elsewhere and infect some parents and siblings, according to a new study published Friday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention .
The authors of the study noted that research had previously shown that children 10 years and older could spread the virus in schools. The researchers said the new study is evidence that young children, including an 8-month-old baby, can also spread the virus, despite not being seriously ill with Kovid-19, the researchers said.
The study looked at three outbreaks occurring in three childcare centers in Salt Lake City between April and July. Using contact tracing data collected at the time of the outbreak, the researchers “retrospectively constructed transmission chains” using the data to determine how to spread the virus. Researchers said a total of 83 children attended the three childcare centers included in the study.
Between the three outbreaks, researchers said 12 children at childcare centers were infected with Kovid-19, although three of them never developed symptoms and nine developed only mild symptoms. The study stated that 12 of those children came into contact with 46 people who are not connected to childcare facilities and 12, or more than a quarter, were infected. The study stated that six mothers infected among the children, one of whom was hospitalized, three siblings and three others.
“Confirmed, asymptomatic, transmission was seen in two out of three children with COVID-19,” the researchers wrote, providing more evidence that those who do not have symptoms of Kovid-19 still remain Viruses can spread. “COVID-19 is less severe in children than in adults, but children may still play a role in transmission.”
The role that children, especially asymptomatic children, play in spreading the virus has become a much-awaited topic, as the debate over whether to reopen schools for in-person learning continues. While researchers focused exclusively on childcare settings and not necessarily in schools, they recommended testing as a useful mitigation and research tool.
“Two out of three asymptomatic children transmit SARS-CoV-2 to their parents and possibly their teachers,” he wrote. “When SARS-CoV-2 testing is available, timely results, and testing of patients’ contacts in childcare settings regardless of symptoms can help prevent transmission and provide a better understanding of the role played by children in transmission Could. ”
The researchers noted some limitations of their study. Between April 1 and July 10, Salt Lake County identified 17 childcare centers with at least two confirmed Kovid-19 cases within a 14-day period, but the study only includes data on those three centers.
The researchers said that the guidance of the contact tracing method changed during the epidemic and could lead to inconsistent data collection systems. In addition, they stated that the initial test criteria were more restrictive and may reduce the number of infections.
And finally, the researchers mentioned that at one of the centers, they might not know the source of the outbreak, so it is possible that cases at the center were brought from another source. At two other facilities, the researchers said they traced the source of the infection to the staff members who contracted Kovid-19 through a family member.
Researchers concluded, “Testing contacts with laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 cases in childcare settings, including children who may not have symptoms, may improve the control of transmission from childcare attendants.”