The impact the virus has on children remains a confusing topic for many parents

Children and the COVID-19 vaccine

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - One year into the Coronavirus pandemic, the impact the virus has on children remains a confusing topic for many parents.

The Children’s Hospital Association reported more than 2.5 million children in the United States have tested positive for the virus.

Both Pfizer and Moderna opened vaccine trials to children late last year, but doctors predict the vaccine will not be available for children until mid or late 2021.

According to the Centers for Disease Control, the infection rate among children remains relatively low. However, over the last few weeks, there has been a 16% increase in the virus among children.

Earlier this week the CDC published a report saying schools should reopen as soon as possible if social distancing and mask-wearing can be maintained.

Researchers said data from the fall semester from schools in the United States show schools are not responsible for the same type of outbreaks that have been reported at nursing homes and correctional facilities.

“For me, the biggest risk for school is during lunch time when you have to take your mask off to eat lunch,” said Doctor David Kimberlin with UAB. “That’s a risk, but there are ways people can change in a classroom if you are eating there or if you are in a cafeteria to be able to mitigate that and to deal with that. We certainly know that not being in school also poses risk to children. Emotional risk, educational risks, and so forth.”

The ADPH announced this week, a new variant of the virus was reported in two children under the age of 19. Doctor Kimberlin said researchers are still working to learn if the new variants impact children differently.

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