SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) — While states across the country work to protect their older populations from COVID-19, a recent study suggests that mass vaccinations of a different age group could help slow the virus.
People ages 20 to 49 are most responsible for the 2020 COVID-19 resurgences, according to a study published Tuesday in Science Magazine.
After schools re-opened in October 2020, the study says adults in the 20 to 49 range accounted for 72.2% of infections across the U.S. locations they studied. More specifically, the 20-34 age range contributed to 34% of infections and the 35-49 segment contributed to 38.2% of infections.
“This study provides evidence that the resurgent COVID-19 epidemics in the US in 2020 have been driven by adults aged 20-49, and in particular adults aged 35-49, before and after school reopening. Unlike pandemic flu, these adults accounted after school reopening in October, 2020 for an estimated 72.2% [68.6%-75.9%] of SARS-CoV-2 infections in the US locations considered.”
The study found that just 2.7% of infections came from children ages 0-9, and 7.1% from teens ages 10-19.
Due to the high rates, the researchers believe focusing mass vaccination efforts for the 20-49 age group will help control COVID-19 infections.
“This study indicates that in locations where novel highly-transmissible SARS-CoV-2 lineages have not yet established, additional interventions among adults aged 20-49, such as mass vaccination with transmission-blocking vaccines, could bring resurgent COVID-19 epidemics under control and avert deaths,” according to the paper.
The study maintains that controlling the spread in the 20s to middle-aged demographic would also help with safely reopening schools.
Editor’s note, this post was altered to clarify the infection rates among segments of the adult population.
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