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Coronavirus lives on in kid’s poo and snot – even if they don’t have symptoms
March 25, 2020
Kids could be contributing to the rapid spread of coronavirus in the UK as the virus can live in their poo and snot, experts have warned.
Scientists at the University of Virginia have discovered the deadly virus can live on in children's poo and snot, even if they haven't shown symptoms.
The study claims that because of this, the virus can easily spread to others who attend nurseries and schools.
Professor Steven Zeichner, from the University of Virginia School of Medicine said the infectious disease "infects children differently than adults" and understand those differences can be important in understanding transmission.
He said: "Many infectious diseases affect children differently than adults and understanding those differences can yield important insights.
"This will likely be true for COVID-19, just as it was for older infectious diseases.
"Children, even asymptomatic children, could play a major role in disease transmission.
"Prolonged shedding in nasal secretions and stool has substantial implications for a community spread in daycare centres, schools, and in the home."
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Professor Zeichner, who is also working towards a vaccine with other scientists at the University, said the uncertainty in how it spreads is why social distancing is "important practice."
He said: "Since many children infected with COVID-19 appear to have had mild symptoms, or even no symptoms at all, it is important to practice all the social distancing, hygiene and other precautions being recommended by public health authorities to minimise transmission from children to others, including family members who may be at greater risk from the infection, such as grandparents or family members with chronic medical conditions."
Schools and unessential businesses are now closed in the UK, a move Boris Johnson made last week.
He had advised the UK schools do not spread the disease, but chose to shut their doors days before a nationwide lockdown.
Some educational facilities are still open to special needs children and children who have parents that are key workers.