Children are almost as likely as adults to become infected with coronavirus, but they are less likely to have symptoms, according to a new study published Friday.
The new study, published in the journal JAMA Pediatrics, found adults and children living in Utah and New York City shared similar risks of becoming infected with coronavirus. But kids only had symptoms about half the time.
“The study demonstrates that all along, children of all ages including infants and toddlers have had a similar risk of SARS- CoV-2 infection compared with adults,” Dr. Flor Munoz, a pediatric infectious disease specialist at Texas Children’s Hospital and associate professor of pediatrics at Baylor College of Medicine, wrote in an accompanying editorial. SARS-CoV-2 is the name of the coronavirus that causes Covid-19.
“The fact that children, and especially young children, can transmit SARS-CoV-2 is now established and more clearly understood,” wrote Munoz, who was not involved in the study. She added that the new findings should be considered in pandemic control efforts as well as vaccine and therapeutics research.
These findings were published just a day after the companies Pfizer and BioNTech officially requested emergency use authorization from the US Food and Drug Administration for their Covid-19 vaccine, at a smaller dosage, in children ages 5 to 11.