If your kids have these common coronavirus questions, Dr. Anthony Fauci has the answers
One of the reasons this year has been so long and scary is because of how many unknowns there have been — COVID-19 is still a brand-new illness that we have a lot to learn about, despite nearly a year of fighting it in a global pandemic. And if the lack of information has been scary for adults who can read the news, imagine how it must feel for kids. That’s why Dr. Anthony Fauci, the leading coronavirus expert in the U.S., teamed up with The Ten News to hold a town hall just for kids.
The meeting was recorded in a podcast episode that you can listen to with your kids. In it, Dr. Fauci answered some of the most common questions kids have about COVID-19. After explaining in detail exactly what his job is, Fauci got down to business answering one of the first big questions: If everyone stayed home for two weeks, would COVID go away?”
“It likely would decrease COVID, but I don’t think two weeks is enough to have COVID just disappear,” he said. “Right now, it’s very, very prevalent in the United States.”
Instead, what Fauci said people need to do is keep washing their hands, wearing masks, and avoiding crowds.
“Except when you’re with family,” he added. “That’s OK, but you don’t want to have big parties and social gatherings right now.”
The next question was about what happens if someone in your class has COVID-19.
“If you wore your mask faithfully every day, the chances of you getting corona because you were exposed to someone is low, so I wouldn’t worry about it,” Fauci explained. “But, it is not zero, and that’s the reason why you have to quarantine.”
To the question, “Can pets carry coronavirus,” Fauci said generally, no.
“We don’t want children to be worried that their pets are going to be dangerous to them,” he added, even though there have been a handful of cases of animals catching the disease. “So don’t worry about it, you can give your pet a big hug.”
Fauci answered all kinds of questions from kids, including when they’ll be able to get a coronavirus vaccine (we don’t really know yet), whether they should get the vaccine if they have allergies (yes, because they’ll be in a healthcare setting where they can get help if they have a reaction), and whether the vaccine will provide lifelong immunity (we don’t know, but if it doesn’t, we’ll get booster shots).
At the end of the podcast, the host asked Dr. Fauci if there was anything else he wanted to let kids know right now.
“Don’t get discouraged,” he said. “Things are going to get better. They’re going to get back to normal, you’re going to be able to play with your friends, you’re going to be able to go to school without worrying about it, you’re going to have parties and have fun. This will end, I promise you.”
TBH, that’s a message we all needed to hear.