PerspectiveViewpoint: COVID-19

COVID-19 in children and young people

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Science  16 Oct 2020:
Vol. 370, Issue 6514, pp. 286-288
DOI: 10.1126/science.abd6165

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  • In Covid19-era, is it time for a mandatory Flu-vaccination for children?
    • Andrea D. Praticò, Researcher of Pediatrics, Unit of Rare Diseases of the Nervous System in Childhood, Department of Clinical and Experimental Medicine, University of Catania
    • Other Contributors:
      • Martino Ruggieri, Full Professor of Pediatrics, Unit of Rare Diseases of the Nervous System in Childhood, Department of Clinical and Experimental Medicine, University of Catania

    We have read with interest the recent Perspectives article on COVID-19 infection and young people by Professors Snape and Viner (1), who highlighted the milder (and mostly heterogeneous) presentation of the disease in childhood, as well as the disproportionate precautions currently adopted by the governments and school systems of the Northern Hemisphere in the management of infected or likely infected children. The Authors also reported that at the present day, no active immunization against Sars-Cov2 is being tested in children, and it reasonable to think that efficacious vaccination for COVID-19 will not be available for this age group in the upcoming months.
    In this aspect and in order to avoid the amount of school-days lost by students of all ages and the direct and indirect consequences underlined by the Authors (i.e. inadequate preparation, limited activities and social interactions, as well as increased incidence of home injuries) (2) it should be underlined the importance of extensive and near-to-mandatory vaccination schedule against influenza virus for school-aged people. In the United States, during the 2018-2019 flu epidemic more than seven million people aged 5 to 17 were symptomatic, at least 21,000 required hospitalization and 211 died; at the same time more than three million children under 5 were symptomatic, of whom 25,000 required hospitalization and 266 died (3). In the same period, flu vaccination has been demonstrated a safe and useful measure...

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    Competing Interests: None declared.

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