Two Korean studies released in the journal Emerging Infectious Diseases suggest that children are unlikely to be large spreaders of COVID-19:
- Absence of SARS-CoV-2 Transmission from Children in Isolation to Guardians, South Korea
- Childcare Exposure to Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 for 4-Year-Old Presymptomatic Child, South Korea
Susceptibility to SARS-CoV-2 Infection Among Children and Adolescents Compared With Adults
In this meta-analysis there is preliminary evidence that children and adolescents have a lower susceptibility to the SARS-CoV-2 virus, with an odds ratio of 0.56 of being contacts infected compared to adults. There is weak evidence that children and adolescents play a smaller role than adults in the transmission of SARS-CoV-2 at the population level.
September 14, 2020. JAMA Pediatrics. Frequency of Children vs Adults Carrying Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 Asymptomatically
The study examines the frequency of SARS-CoV-2 carriers among children with non-infectious conditions and no symptoms or signs associated with SARS-CoV-2 by comparing it to the frequency of individuals carrying SARS-CoV-2 in a similar adult population. .
Of the 881 children who presented to the pediatric emergency room, 83 (34 female and 49 male; median age 5.3 years) met the eligibility criteria. Over the same period, of the 3,610 adults who reported to the emergency room, 131 (51 women and 80 men; median age 77) were included.
Children tested positive less frequently than adults. Eleven of 12 adults tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 on the first swab. None of the individuals included developed any signs or symptoms of SARS-CoV-2 infection within 48 hours after admission.
August 19, 2020. Journal of Pediatrics. Pediatric SARS-CoV-2: Clinical Presentation, Infectivity, and Immune Responses
Children and young people can contribute to the spread of the new coronavirus: in case of infection, even asymptomatic, they can have a very high viral load from the first days, even higher than that of adults hospitalized in intensive care. The alert is launched by the most comprehensive study conducted so far on Covid-19 in the pediatric field. The results, concerning 192 children and young people under-22, are published in the Journal of Pediatrics by researchers from Massachusetts General Hospital.
Role of children in the transmission of the COVID-19 pandemic: a rapid scoping review.
In response to the pandemic, most countries have adopted social distancing measures even in the child population.
A quick scoping review was carried out to find out whether children are more contagious than adults and the percentage of asymptomatic cases in children. The databases taken into consideration are: PubMed, Google Scholar and MedRxiv / bioRxiv. The time period was limited from 1 December 2019 to 28 May 2020. Only studies published in English, Italian, French or Spanish were included.
Children do not transmit Covid-19 to a greater extent than adults.
The validity of epidemiological surveillance needs to be improved to address current uncertainties and take into account the social determinants and health inequalities in children during and after the current pandemic.