CHILDREN appear to play a “fairly limited” role in the spread of coronavirus and could safely return to school, some experts say.
The bug is more likely to be passed between adults and to youngsters, rather than the other way around, their research suggests.
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The Royal College of Paediatrics said: “The importance of children in transmitting the virus is difficult to establish."
“But there is some evidence that their role in transmitting the virus is fairly limited.”
All age groups have been infected with Covid-19, including newborns, but under-18s account for less than two in 100 infections.
Youngsters who catch it typically suffer more mild symptoms than adults and many appear to have no symptoms.
Very few develop severe or life-threatening disease, with just 0.01 cases proving fatal — similar to seasonal flu.
Studies in China, where the pandemic started, have also shown children are unlikely to be the source of outbreaks within families.
Dr Alasdair Munro, from University Hospital Southampton, said: “The household studies are reassuring because even if there are a lot of infected children, they are not going home and infecting others.”
Colleague Prof Saul Faust said: “The evidence about Covid-19 transmission is telling us that the risk to children and the public of reopening the schools is low.”
But Hong Kong-based expert Gary Wong said: “Reopening of schools will likely facilitate transmission, as respiratory viruses are known to circulate in schools and daycares.”
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