As the coronavirus pandemic continues to surge throughout the U.S., President Donald Trump has made a false claim about children and how they transmit the potentially fatal virus. At a coronavirus briefing on Wednesday, Trump continued to advocate that schools should be reopened by the upcoming fall term, according to CNN.
However, to back up this demand, Trump also claimed that "a lot of people," including children, "don't transmit" the virus. "They don't catch it easily, they don't bring it home easily. And if they do catch it, they get better fast." Trump's claims are refuted by a study put out by the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on July 16, which reported that children up to age 10 spread COVID-19 less than adults do, although the same wasn't true of children ages 10 to 19, who are just as likely to transmit the virus as any full-grown adult.
The study itself looked at 5,706 people who were the first in their households to report COVID-19 symptoms between Jan. 20 and March 27, as well as the 59,073 people they had come into contact with. The findings were uncovered after the agency tested all of the household contacts of each patient, regardless of symptoms. Though they only tested those who they'd come into contact with who'd been symptomatic. "Although the detection rate for contacts of preschool-aged children was lower, young children may show higher attack rates when the school closure ends, contributing to community transmission of COVID-19," the study said.
Currently, the National Institutes of Health and the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are also studying family households to help understand more how children factor in when it comes to transmitting the virus. "We don't know the impact that children have yet on the transmission cycle," CDC Director Dr. Robert Redfield said back on June 30.
Trump's latest claims come as he and his administration have vocally supported the idea of schools opening up in the fall. In fact, the president has even threatened to withhold funding to states who don't comply, despite the fact that cases are currently surging across the U.S. White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany has even gone on record saying that "the science should not stand in the way of this," regarding the reopening. Although she followed that up with a claim that "the science is very clear on this," referring to about the relatively low-level fatalities resulting from COVID-19.