Teens are half as prone to Covid-19 as people above 20: Report

Prashasti Awasthi Mumbai | Updated on June 17, 2020

Young people under 20 are around half as prone to catching Covid-19 as people aged 20 or above, according to research published on Tuesday.

According to the Reuters report, clinical symptoms of the pandemic disease appear in only about a fifth of infections in children and teens.

The research used the data retrieved from 32 locations China, Italy, Japan, Singapore, Canada, and South Korea, found that by contrast, Covid-19 symptoms appear in 69 per cent of infections in people aged 70 or older.

The findings disclosed that closure of schools and coaching classes would have a limited impact on the rapid transmission of the disease, the researchers said.

Published in the journal Nature Medicine, the study compared the effect school closures on simulated outbreaks of flu - which is known to spread swiftly in children - and of Covid-19, the disease caused by the new coronavirus, Reuters report added.

“For Covid-19, there was much less of an effect of school closures,” said Rosalind Eggo, an infectious disease modeler at The London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine who co-led the study.

She added, however, that the findings come from simulated outbreaks and need to be reinforced with real-world research.

Using demographic data from the six countries, as well as from six studies on estimated Covid-19 infection rates and symptom severity across different age groups, the model showed that people under 20 are about half as susceptible to Covid-19 as people over 20 and that among 10 to 19 year-olds, only 21 per cent of those infected were symptomatic, Reuters report added.

The researchers also simulated Covid-19 epidemics in 146 capital cities around the world and found that the total expected number of clinical cases varied with a median age.

“The age structure of a population can have a significant impact,” said Nicholas Davies, who co-led the work. “Countries with more young people may experience a lower burden of Covid-19.”

Published on June 17, 2020

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