Abiad Cautions of Covid among Children, Adolescents


Director of the state-run Rafik Hariri University Hospital, Firass Abiad, warned on Monday of the effect of Covid on children who retract the virus.

“Most children with Covid do not show symptoms, and the incidence of the infection in the young is usually underestimated. The Ministry of Health report reveals that in Lebanon, 7000 (age 0-9) and 26,000 (age 10-19) have tested positive. Among them, 15 passed away and 14/15 had comorbidities,” said Abiad in a tweet.

Abiad noted that the majority of children who get infected with Covid will not have symptoms. “There is some evidence that they may be less susceptible to the infection. If infected, the majority will not have symptoms. Some may have mild symptoms, but few will get very sick. That is why they are less likely to be tested.”

A new study shows that sick children with Covid can have “either a severe respiratory infection, or a generalized inflammatory response. Both can be fatal,” he said.

Abiad emphasized that children and adolescents do transmit the infection to others, though with adolescents it can be quite infectious.

He advised against opening schools without proper safety measures.

“Schools are not advised to open without proper safety measures put in place, including testing. With our current Covid status, opening schools carries risks. Yet, schools play a vital role in the psychological and social wellbeing of students, in addition to the educational impact. The real debate is not whether schools should open, but under what circumstances,” he concluded.

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