A study released overnight from Mass General Hospital finds children may play a large role in spreading COVID-19 because many won’t show symptoms.
Of 192 kids tested for the coronavirus, researchers said 49 tested positive for the virus and 18 had late-onset, coronavirus-related illness.
Most did not have symptoms. Those that did had a runny nose, cough, slight fever.
“When we screened kids with the symptoms, half had the virus and half have not, and this is going to get only worse with the flu season, in which a lot of kids will have the symptoms,” Massachusetts General Hospital Dr. Alessio Fasano said.
The researchers said given their data, mask wearing, hand washing and social distancing are even more vital to slowing the spread.
The study, which was published in the Journal of Pediatrics, was released as districts prepare for the start of the school year.
Massachusetts is requiring all students get a flu vaccine by the end of the year. It applies to children 6 months or older who are attending child care, preschool, K-12 and colleges and universities.
There are medical and religious exceptions. Children who are homeschooled and college students who are fully remote the entire year are also exempt.