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Doctors say more research needed to determine impacts of coronavirus on children

'If your child is sick, please get them tested," Palm Beach County health director says
Posted at 4:25 PM, Jul 10, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-10 18:52:35-04

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — The number of people being tested for COVID-19 across the state is increasing, and so are the number of children being tested.

Doctors are learning more about how the coronavirus impacts children.

If you ask Shannon Mueger and her 10-year-old son Liam how long they have been quarantined, they'll say a long time.

Recently, Liam started experiencing COVID-19 symptoms, but they were mild: some coughing, sore throat, and a runny nose.

"Just because mama bear instincts came in, I was just like, let's just go get him tested," said Mueger.

The test came back positive, but Shannon who said she hasn’t separated from her son, tested negative. In fact, none of the adults around him tested positive.

FoundCare chief medical officer and pediatrician Dr. Oneka Marriott said there is still ongoing research on kids and the coronavirus, but there are some theories being explored.

"Maybe kids aren’t transmitting, that they may be, maybe what we call and vectors for the disease," Marriott said. "So they get it but they are not necessarily transmitting."

Marriott said COVID-19 symptoms are appearing to be more mild in children than adults, but parents should still be cautious.

Dr. Alina Alonso, the director of the Florida Department of Health in Palm Beach County, said the more testing that happens, the more they understand who is impacted.

"We now know that children can get severely ill with the virus and we now know children under the age of 18 have died with the virus," Alonso said. "And we know that children under the age of 18 can also have this multi -inflammatory syndrome. If your child is sick, please get them tested."