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COVID and Asia's kids: Overlooked victims suffer stress or worse

Catching the virus is just one risk to children, who are last in line for shots

A health worker collects a swab sample to test a child for COVID-19 in Mumbai in November, 2020.   © Reuters

KUALA LUMPUR/NEW DELHI/TOKYO -- With Malaysian schools gradually reopening after a nine-month hiatus due to the coronavirus, 14-year-old Samyuktha Pannierselvam is eager to catch up on gossip with her friends. But while she is cheerful on the outside, Samyuktha is keeping what she calls a "dark secret": She had COVID-19 during the break.

She belongs to an extended family of 40 in the suburban town of Kuala Selangor, about 80 km away from Kuala Lumpur. Eleven of the family members, including her mother, were infected. One aunt died.

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