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Kids Health

US Reports a Huge Increase in COVID-19 Cases in Children

The US is going through the worst phase of the coronavirus pandemic right now.  With 144,145 children reported last week, it has seen a high increase in COVID-19 cases in children below 17 years of age. This data from November 12 to November 19 reports the highest weekly increase ever since this pandemic has started. The American Academy of Pediatrics confirmed this increase d on Monday, reporting it to be 28%.

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Nearly 1.2 million children in the US were tested positive till November 19 which marks an 11.8% increase in COID-19 cases in children based on data obtained from 49 states.

This number shows that the proportion of COVID-19 positive children has been gradually increased compared to the start of the coronavirus pandemic. However, the complications, severities, and deaths in children are less likely as compared to adults. At some point, health experts were also convinced that coronavirus doesn’t affect children. But some minorities group and children with underlying conditions still remain at high-risk targets for the virus.

A recent study, published in the journal Pediatrics confirmed the increased cases of COVID-19 in children. The data were obtained from 49 states and compiled by the American Academy of Pediatrics and the Children’s Hospital Association.

The data collection started on April 16 and by September 10th, there were a total number of 549,432 COVID-19 cases in children.

The increase was recorded to be 7.3% of the total Covid cases reported in the US. But the growth rate of covid cases in children, as per region were different. More cases were reported from the Northeast at the start of the pandemic, followed by a huge increase in cases in Southern and Western states till June. Till July’s end, Midwest reported the highest cases of Covid-19 cases in children.

The overall growth of Covid-19 cases in minor grew from 3% in the month of April to 28% in the last few weeks. The children below 17 years of age make nearly 22.6% of the total population of the US.

But with this high infection rate, the death rate and hospitalization score for children is relatively slow. By September, only 1.7% of the COVID-19 infected kids were hospitalized. Likewise, the death rate was also only 0.07% of total deaths by COVID-19 which is far less than adult deaths.

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Another study on COVID-19 cases in children published in JAMA Pediatrics tells that minority groups received limited Covid testing. It included Black, Asian, and Hispanic children which were more likely to contract the virus and less likely to get tested as compared to white children.

The methods of reporting of COVID-19 cases are unspecified during all these data measurements. It is still not clear how many total children are currently infected or how many of them are tested. The testing capacity is increasing but whether or not more and more children are availing of it is still unknown.

The health experts urge state officials to keep a detailed record of all COVID-19 cases, especially in children so that the risk evaluation is completed.

Areeba Hussain

The author is a fulltime medical and healthcare writer. She graduated in Medical Microbiology and Immunology with distinction. Her areas of prime interest are medicine, medical technology, disease awareness, and research analysis. Twitter @Areeba94789300

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