The report looked at hospitalization data for 12-to-17-year-olds from a large coronavirus surveillance network and found 204 adolescents who were likely hospitalized primarily for Covid-19 between January 1 and March 31, 2021. Nearly a third were admitted to intensive care units and roughly 4.9% required invasive mechanical ventilation. There were no associated deaths. The study was published in the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.
The findings are a reminder that even children can suffer from the virus, one expert said Friday. “It tells you children can still suffer and be hospitalized by this virus,” Dr. Paul Offit, director of the Vaccine Education Center at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, said Friday. “We had this notion, initially, that this was just a disease of older people. It’s not true. This virus can also hurt children,” he added.
A big challenge remains
With a slowed vaccination pace across the country, the big challenge for US officials continues to be reaching people who are not eager to get the vaccine. It’s a “tragedy” that Americans won’t take advantage of vaccine doses that others around the world desperately need, Dr. Anthony Fauci said Friday.
“One of the real ironic things (is) that we have people in the rest of the world in India, in South America, in Southern Africa who is pleading for vaccines, because they don’t have enough doses,” Fauci said at an event hosted by US Health and Human Services.
The US currently has more Covid-19 vaccine doses than it needs, Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said.
“What a shame and a tragedy that we don’t make use of something that is for our benefit when others throughout the world would do anything to have what we have,” he added.