Welcome! Log In Create A New Profile


some say students don’t catch, spread COVID-19. Studies say it’s not that simple

July 24, 2020 02:11PM

do students don’t catch, spread COVID-19? Studies say it’s not that simple


The youngest students seem to face a lower risk to themselves, and of passing the virus to others.

Several studies from overseas find that high schoolers catch and spread the virus much like adults.

Reopening schools in hotspots with rising case numbers is especially uncertain.

As thousands of communities wrestle with reopening their schools this fall, President Donald Trump said he would be comfortable sending his son or a grandchild back to school. Pressed on whether he understood why some districts would see that as too risky, Trump had reassuring words about COVID-19 and students.

"A lot of people are saying they don’t transmit, and we’re looking at that," Trump said in a July 22 briefing."They don’t catch it easily; they don’t bring it home easily. And if they do catch it, they get better fast. We’re looking at that fact. That is a factor, and we’re looking at that very strongly. We’ll be reporting about that over the next week."

The main problem with Trump’s summary is that it makes no distinction between the youngest and oldest students. Studies are limited. What information we do have from other countries indicates that high schoolers are more like adults, while elementary children present a lower risk. But how those findings might apply in U.S. states with rising case numbers is uncertain.

At one point in the briefing, Trump said, "We have great statistics on young people and on safety."

The record does not support that level of confidence in the data.

Research on children catching the virus
Over the past few months, researchers in other countries have broadly divided students by age and found that the older ones are more likely than the younger ones to be infected.

A recent study out of South Korea looked at more than 1,200 cases of people with COVID-19. It found that the rate of infection was three times higher for children 10 to 19 years old than for children under 10.

In France, about 660 people from one community agreed to be tested for antibodies for the disease. Again, the rate for older children was higher than for younger ones. About 40% of 15- to 17-year-olds tested positive, compared with less than 3% for those under 14.

Epidemiologists in China looked at clusters in Wuhan and Shanghai and tested for the presence of the virus. They used only three age brackets — 14 and under, 15 to 64 and over 64. The youngest group was about a third as likely to have the disease as the adults were. The oldest group had the highest risk.

Those age ranges might not be as helpful as school superintendents would like — 15 to 64 is hardly school-age specific. But the data do show a lower risk for children.

In its guidelines for schools, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said infection seems to vary by age, with students 10 to 17 being more likely to catch the disease than those under 10.

Research on children spreading it
For now, U.S. health officials have discussed a lack of data on children and COVID-19 transmission.

"We don't really know exactly what the efficiency of spread is, first of all, how many children get infected," Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s leading infectious-disease specialist, said at a Senate hearing June 30.

The CDC said more research is needed on school-age children passing the virus on to members of their households. A National Institutes of Health study intends to follow 2,000 families for six months to determine in part how often children get infected and then infect their families.

Our look at existing research on whether children transmit COVID-19 found a complicated picture.

A July commentary published in the journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics reviewed several studies out of Switzerland, China, France and Australia. Co-author Arnaud L’Huillier told PolitiFact that children can emit live viruses, so there is no biological reason why they couldn’t be contagious.

But in line with the other research, co-author William Raszka distinguished between younger and older students.

"Children much less frequently transmit SARS-CoV-2 than adults, and this is most striking in younger children," Raszka said. "I worry more about high school students."

Trump’s words lumped all students together, but the emerging message from the research is that age matters, both for catching and spreading the virus. Where the dividing line falls remains unclear. And even for the youngest children, however rare, the virus can be deadly.

Our Sources

White House, Remarks by President Trump in Press Briefing, July 22, 2020

Science, Changes in contact patterns shape the dynamics of the COVID-19 outbreak in China, June 26, 2020

Emerging Infectious Diseases,Contact Tracing during Coronavirus Disease Outbreak, South Korea, 2020, June 30, 2020

Medrxiv.org, Cluster of COVID-19 in northern France: A retrospective closed cohort study, April 23, 2020

Pediatrics commentary, COVID-19 Transmission and Children: The Child Is Not to Blame, July 8, 2020

Pediatrics, COVID-19 in Children and the Dynamics of Infection in Families, July 2020

University of Vermont Today, Kids Rarely Transmit Covid-19, Say UVM Docs in Top Journal, July 2020

Wall Street Journal, How Risk of Coronavirus Transmission Varies for Kids and Teens, July 20, 2020

New York Times, What Is It That Keeps Most Little Kids From Getting Covid-19?, July 20, 2020

New York Times, New Studies Add to Evidence that Children May Transmit the Coronavirus, May 8, 2020

CNN, Fact check: Trump falsely suggests kids don't transmit coronavirus and that US case surge is due in part to protests and Mexican migration, July 22, 2020

PolitiFact, Are schoolchildren not vectors for COVID-19 as Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis said?, July 16, 2020


Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 07/24/2020 02:12PM by zn.

  covid-19 thread (from 7/8)

zn470July 08, 2020 08:46AM

  My thoughts are...

sstrams54July 09, 2020 07:20AM

  Re: My thoughts are...

zn64July 09, 2020 07:39AM

  I have a bad way..

sstrams48July 09, 2020 09:03AM

  I agree with that

zn43July 09, 2020 09:08AM

  I honestly am done with politics..

sstrams58July 09, 2020 09:52AM

  Re: I honestly am done with politics..

zn45July 09, 2020 12:49PM

  Its all good, man..

sstrams41July 09, 2020 12:58PM

  Sweden Has Become the World's Cautionary Tale

ramBRO50July 09, 2020 07:22AM

  Swedish doctors: Don't do what we did. It's not working.

zn22July 21, 2020 08:18PM

  Got my Covid test 2 days ago. Results are in.... "Negative". It's like everyone figured..

Ramgator36July 09, 2020 07:26AM

  like the old Dizzy Dean line........

21Dog53July 09, 2020 09:28AM

  Re: Got my Covid test 2 days ago. Results are in.... "Negative". It's like everyone figured..

zn36July 09, 2020 01:33PM

  LOLOL When the girl rammed the Q Tip up my nose.....

Ramgator29July 13, 2020 05:05PM

  Cases Are Rising, Why Are Deaths Flatlining

zn65July 10, 2020 02:26AM

  Death rates rising in Calif

waterfield35July 10, 2020 08:34AM

  Re: and in AZ, TN, TX, SC, FL, and NV Attachments

AlbaNY_Ram38July 10, 2020 10:49AM

  Texas COVID deaths higher than publicly reported

zn43July 11, 2020 05:01AM

  Coronavirus deaths take a long-expected turn for the worse

AlbaNY_Ram27July 11, 2020 12:46PM

  Hey we do everything bigger in Texas..

sstrams40July 11, 2020 12:51PM

  Crucial Risk Factors for Coronavirus Deaths

zn38July 10, 2020 05:53AM

  A Lot of Athletes Seem to Have the Coronavirus. Here Are Some Reasons

ramBRO44July 10, 2020 10:28AM

  Hey I like this thread and appreciate the posts

ferragamo7944July 10, 2020 02:57PM

  Re: Hey I like this thread and appreciate the posts

zn39July 10, 2020 03:22PM

  I agree.

Ramgator23July 13, 2020 05:07PM

  Israel & world's worst second wave

zn36July 11, 2020 07:09AM

  Why are young, healthy people dying of coronavirus?

zn37July 11, 2020 07:28AM

  "Hundreds have died"

PHDram41July 11, 2020 07:54AM


zn32July 11, 2020 08:31AM


PHDram32July 11, 2020 08:48AM

  Re: yup

zn33July 11, 2020 10:29AM


PHDram28July 11, 2020 10:33AM

  is there a "post-covid 19 syndrome" ie. longterm effects

zn43July 11, 2020 09:31AM

  covid survivors can suffer weeks after virus clears

zn41July 11, 2020 12:50PM

  "Though there is no data on long-term effects"

PHDram32July 11, 2020 09:16PM


zn34July 12, 2020 04:28AM

  Re: yet

PHDram22July 12, 2020 06:03AM

  where we are in terms of discovering its long-term impacts

zn33July 12, 2020 09:09AM

  Re: where we are in terms of discovering its long-term impacts

zn26July 12, 2020 09:49AM

  Re: 2 where we are in terms of discovering its long-term impacts

zn34July 13, 2020 03:32PM

  more on longterm effects ... 7/14

zn28July 14, 2020 08:49AM

  a simple plasma shot could prevent covid, but.......

Rampage2K-35July 11, 2020 07:07PM

  'new and powerful weapon' against the coronavirus destroys particles

PHDram42July 11, 2020 09:45PM

  Re: Texas: Experts fear for elderly amid virus surge in state with most nursing homes

AlbaNY_Ram31July 12, 2020 08:23AM

  Internal CDC documents warn full reopening of schools is 'highest risk' for coronavirus spread

zn31July 12, 2020 10:28AM

  Why the Protests Didn’t Contribute to the COVID-19 Surge

zn34July 12, 2020 12:02PM

  Disney World reopened

IowaRam33July 12, 2020 03:38PM

  Count me out!

Ramgator26July 12, 2020 03:51PM

  'It's going to be really ugly.' Here come the big bank earnings

PHDram37July 13, 2020 05:26AM

  Cali/LA Going In the Wrong Direction

ramBRO41July 13, 2020 03:56PM

  (sigh!) So Sad

ramBRO37July 13, 2020 04:27PM

  Only in the US..

sstrams40July 14, 2020 04:54AM

  5 Ways the Flu Can Affect Your Health Even After You Feel Better

PHDram29July 14, 2020 01:18PM

  Interesting Article About Mask Wearing

ramBRO39July 14, 2020 01:33PM

  Re: Interesting Article About Mask Wearing

MamaRAMa35July 14, 2020 01:52PM

  Re: Interesting Article About Mask Wearing

ramBRO34July 14, 2020 02:16PM

  Re: Interesting Article About Mask Wearing

MamaRAMa33July 16, 2020 01:49PM

  Re: Interesting Article About Mask Wearing

zn33July 16, 2020 04:01PM

  first vaccine tested in the U.S. for the coronavirus

zn47July 14, 2020 03:03PM

  UPDATE: Oxford-AstraZeneca Covid Vaccine Study...7/20

zn24July 20, 2020 05:49AM

  A New Understanding of Herd Immunity

PHDram27July 14, 2020 04:15PM

  a new unproven theory of Herd Immunity + warnings that it probably isn't enough

zn38July 14, 2020 04:46PM

  Well new is kinda in the title

PHDram23July 14, 2020 05:45PM

  Re: A New Understanding of Herd Immunity

ramBRO31July 14, 2020 05:44PM

  Re: A New Understanding of Herd Immunity

waterfield30July 14, 2020 08:19PM

  Tate Reeves, Republican Governor of Mississippi, on "herd immunity"

zn48July 15, 2020 03:43PM

  Re: Tate Reeves, Republican Governor of Mississippi, on "herd immunity"

Rampage2K-36July 15, 2020 07:13PM

  wishful thinking?

zn38July 15, 2020 08:28PM

  Re: wishful thinking?

Rampage2K-31July 15, 2020 08:42PM

  Re: wishful thinking?

zn32July 15, 2020 08:51PM

  Was wearing masks

PHDram25July 15, 2020 09:53PM

  Scientific Journal Pulls Over a Dozen Papers by Chinese Researchers

PHDram28July 16, 2020 04:16AM

  deaths are rising again (7/16)

zn35July 16, 2020 08:17AM

  I can't shake Covid-19: Warnings from young survivors still suffering

MamaRAMa41July 18, 2020 04:19AM

  CDC director: We can control virus in 4-8 weeks if everyone in US wears a mask

zn32July 18, 2020 06:29PM

  out today and less than half people wearing mask

ferragamo7932July 18, 2020 06:31PM

  Re: out today and less than half people wearing mask

waterfield28July 18, 2020 08:04PM

  Re: out today and less than half people wearing mask

zn29July 18, 2020 09:34PM

  Pre-existing immunity to SARS-CoV-2

PHDram29July 19, 2020 06:16AM

  Cholesterol-lowering drug could see coronavirus treated like common cold

Rampage2K-39July 19, 2020 07:33AM

  Interesting...i recall hearing about the cholesterol connection earlier

PHDram27July 19, 2020 10:21AM

  School-aged kids may spread the virus in homes more than adults, new study finds

zn29July 23, 2020 01:34PM

  CDC guidelines favor of opening schools

PHDram22July 23, 2020 05:50PM

  some say students don’t catch, spread COVID-19. Studies say it’s not that simple

zn29July 24, 2020 02:11PM

  7/31: Researchers find COVID-infected children may be major carriers

zn11July 31, 2020 12:42PM

  CDC says children susceptible to COVID-19

zn9August 01, 2020 09:14AM

  Indiana was undercounting coronavirus deaths in nursing homes

zn18July 28, 2020 07:17PM

  Covid-19 infections raise concerns about lasting heart damage

zn17July 29, 2020 11:32AM

  What would happen if they got it again?

Atlantic Ram17July 29, 2020 05:48PM

  Re: What would happen if they got it again?

zn17July 30, 2020 06:21AM

  Sweden Sees COVID-19 Cases Plummet as Rest of Europe Suffers Spike

PHDram23July 30, 2020 05:05AM

  Re: Sweden Sees COVID-19 Cases Plummet as Rest of Europe Suffers Spike

AlbaNY_Ram26July 30, 2020 10:09AM

  Re: Sweden Sees COVID-19 Cases Plummet as Rest of Europe Suffers Spike

zn23July 30, 2020 11:39AM

  Sweden Unveils ‘Promising’ Covid-19 Data as New Cases Plunge

PHDram22July 30, 2020 01:14PM

  it;s not just deaths

zn52August 02, 2020 10:04AM

  A couple of other interesting thoughts from the author

PHDram17August 02, 2020 11:13AM

  Re: A couple of other interesting thoughts from the author

Rampage2K-20August 02, 2020 12:21PM

  Re: it;s not just deaths

Rampage2K-23August 02, 2020 12:17PM

  Re: it;s not just deaths

zn22August 03, 2020 05:32AM

  i was under the impression

PHDram15August 03, 2020 05:56AM

  don;t speak for other people

zn24August 03, 2020 06:42AM

  It contributes nothing.

PHDram21August 03, 2020 07:37AM

  a superintendent on trying to reopen his schools safely[

zn14August 03, 2020 08:24PM

  COVID-19 has created unprecedented levels of child abuse

PHDram8August 03, 2020 09:12PM

  Coronavirus leads to mass hunger, killing 10,000 children a month

PHDram8August 04, 2020 03:44AM

  Too Many Are Too Selfish- Cases Near 5 Milion in US

Rampage2K-17August 04, 2020 10:41AM

  from that

zn11August 04, 2020 11:55AM

  Re: deja vu all over again: The Mask Slackers of 1918

AlbaNY_Ram10August 04, 2020 01:29PM

  Re: deja vu all over again: The Mask Slackers of 1918

Rampage2K-11August 04, 2020 02:31PM