Should adult kids get a COVID-19 test before a visit home?

Ask the doctor

Published: February, 2021

Q. Should I make my kids get tested for COVID-19 before they come to visit me?

A. As we go to press, in most communities in the United States and Europe, the virus still is widespread — particularly among young adults. Many young adults who become infected do not develop symptoms, and therefore may not suspect they are infected. Worse, they may be shedding the virus and able to infect others. Older people are more vulnerable to becoming severely ill from the virus than young adults (although some young adults and even children can become very ill). So if my kids had symptoms that might indicate they had COVID-19, I'd ask them not to come. If they had no symptoms but were living in a "hot spot," I'd ask them to get tested before they traveled — and not to visit if they tested positive. I would hate not to see the kids, but it's a sacrifice we have to make until we control the virus.

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