Making pre-school children wear masks is bad public health

Robert C. Hughes*, Sunil S. Bhopal, Mark Tomlinson

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalComment/debatepeer-review

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Abstract

Children are not small adults. This is a critical point that many pediatricians and other child health professionals get bored of saying, yet it does seem to need repeating. While children have the lowest risk from COVID-19 directly, they risk suffering the indirect impacts of policy decisions, many of which appear to have been made with next to no explicit consideration of their interests. Public health interventions should not only be about infectious disease control, they should consider a broad set of outcomes. In addition, they ought to consider vulnerability, including that in early childhood - a time when young children's brains are developing rapidly and are most susceptible to adversity. We believe that mandating masking of pre-school children is not in line with public health principles, and needs to be urgently re-considered.
Original languageEnglish
Article number100197
JournalPublic Health in Practice
Volume2
Early online date02 Oct 2021
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2021

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