SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4 News) – Children who contracted Coronavirus at Salt Lake County child care facilities spread the virus to their households, sending at least one parent to the hospital, according to a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention study released Friday.
Out of 46 people the children had contact with outside of the facilities, the children spread the virus to at least 12 of them—a rate of 26%—according to the CDC study on the Salt Lake County daycare outbreaks.
The results came from contact tracing data collected from three COVID-19 outbreaks in child care facilities in Salt Lake County, Utah, during April 1–July 10, 2020. The study reviewed the data to “explore attack rates and transmission patterns” of COVID-19.
Among the children who contracted the virus during the outbreaks at the three daycare centers, most had only mild symptoms, said the study.
Three of the children who contracted the virus did not show any symptoms at all. Two of the asymptomatic children transmitted the virus to their parents and possibly their teachers, the study observed.
According to the CDC study, the current reported evidence suggests that children ten years of age and younger “can efficiently transmit SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).” However, the study went on to say, the available data was limited.
“COVID-19 is less severe in children than it is in adults,” the study went on to say, “but children can still play a role in transmission.”
It concluded, “having SARS-CoV-2 testing available, timely results, and testing of contacts of patients in child care settings regardless of symptoms can help prevent transmission and provide a better understanding of the role played by children in transmission.”
The CDC guidelines for child care programs recommends that staff members and children quarantine and get tested for Coronavirus if any members of the same household show symptoms.
The CDC also recommends the use of face masks, particularly among staff members, especially when children are too young to wear masks, along with hand hygiene, frequent cleaning and disinfecting of high-touch surfaces, and staying home when sick to reduce transmission.