A study released by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention last Friday (27/8) reveals that an unvaccinated teacher from Marin County, California (USA), taught elementary school students without wearing a mask. She had symptoms such as “cough, fever and headache” and ended up infecting half of the children and some of their families.
As US broadcaster NBC News shows, officials from Marin’s public health department launched an investigation into the outbreak in the classroom on May 26, three days after the professor tested positive for covid-19.
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The teacher, who was one of only two employees who had not been vaccinated at primary school, initially said her symptoms were a result of allergy, according to the network.
Among her 24 students, 22 who were not of age to vaccinate were tested for the new coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) and 12 tested positive, according to a report produced by county officials and University of California researchers ( USA).
In the United States, at the time, children under the age of 12 were not eligible to receive the covid-19 immunizer.
According to NBC News, the study concludes that the infection rate in the classroom was 50%, but students seated in the front rows faced an increased risk of infection with SARS-CoV-2. The transmission rate in the two lines closest to the teacher’s desk was 80%.
The report reveals that the teacher occasionally read aloud to students, even though she was unmasked – the school required the use of facial protection within its premises.
In addition to the children, four parents were later infected in the outbreak, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Of the infected parents, only one was not vaccinated. Those who received the immunizing agent had symptoms such as fever, chills, cough, headache and loss of smell.
A total of 26 elementary school students and their families were infected after exposure to an unvaccinated teacher. At least 18 of them have contracted the delta variant, the study says.
“The infection rate of the outbreak highlights the increased transmissibility of the delta variant and the potential for rapid spread, especially in unvaccinated populations such as schoolchildren,” says the report, quoted by NBC News.
Experts also concluded that the impact on the community was not greater because the vaccination rate in Marin County is considered one of the best in California. At the time of the outbreak, 72% of eligible people had been fully immunized.
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