Trump faces backlash after saying children are ‘almost immune’ to COVID-19

Published 2020-08-07 07:00

Facebook and Twitter pulled video, saying it spreads false information

U.S. President Donald Trump has come under fire after saying that kids are “almost immune” to COVID-19.

He made the comment Wednesday in an interview with Fox News, which was posted in a video to his Facebook page and his campaign team’s Twitter account.

Facebook and Twitter both removed the video later the same day, saying it contained false claims and misinformation about COVID-19.

The Trump campaign team didn’t agree — it said Trump had stated a fact about the virus.

So who’s right? Here’s what we know.

A picture of Donald Trump's Twitter page, with someone holding a phone beside it with the Twitter logo on the screen.

The video was posted by the Donald Trump campaign's @TeamTrump account and shared by the U.S. president. It was later hidden by Twitter for breaking its COVID-19 misinformation rules. (Image credit: Olivier Douliery/AFP)

Are children immune to the virus?

The short and simple answer to whether or not children are immune to COVID-19 is no, according to multiple medical studies and experts.

Being immune to something means that a person can’t catch a particular virus.

That’s not the case when it comes to kids and COVID-19, said Dr. Charlotte Moore Hepburn, director of medical affairs for the Canadian Paediatric Society, in an interview with CBC Kids News on Thursday.

Thankfully, she said, most children who have had the virus have no symptoms or very mild ones.

And even though some kids have been sick with the disease, they make up far fewer of the known infections than adults.

Several kids sit in a classroom wearing masks and physically distanced from one another.

While studies have shown that far fewer children have contracted COVID-19 than adults, precautions have been put in place across Canada to reduce the spread of the virus once school starts in the fall. (Image credit: Frederic J. Brown/AFP)

Countless studies have shown the same.

One analysis conducted by the World Health Organization between Feb. 24 and July 12 showed that of six million infections worldwide, children aged five to 14 years only made up 4.6 per cent of the cases.

Can children still spread the virus?

Even though fewer children have gotten COVID-19 than adults, they can still spread the disease to others, Moore Hepburn said.

And she said it will be especially important for kids to take precautions once they head back to school in the fall.

But Moore Hepburn said whether or not kids spread the disease to others not only depends on how careful they are, but also on how careful others who live in their community are.

“We're all really connected.”

Kids in a hallway wearing masks.

From wearing masks to staying distant, kids are being urged to follow their school’s COVID-19 rules in classrooms come fall. (Image credit: Halfpoint/Shutterstock)

Moore Hepburn is recommending students follow these steps when going back to school:

With files from Thomson Reuters
TOP IMAGE CREDIT: (Olivier Douliery/AFP)

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