New data from an updated joint report from the American Academy of Pediatrics and the Children’s Hospital Association shows that more than 70,000 new cases of COVID-19 have been reported in the United States since early August.
COVID-19 cases in children have increased by 21% between August 6 and August 20, just in a period of 2 weeks. The report also highlighted that more than 440,000 children had been infected since the start of the pandemic. Though the number of infections in children is rising, there is still less risk of severe infections as compared to adults and seniors.
An updated report from the CDC from earlier in August also notes that the rate of hospitalizations is increasing among children. Though the number of hospitalizations of children with COVID-19 is much lower compared to adults, the ratio of children admitted to intensive care is about one in three – about the same ratio as adults.
This data comes in as students in some parts of the U.S. are preparing to get back to school as the risk of COVID-19 symptoms reduce. Even though we have a vaccine coming soon on the horizon, there is still a lot of unknowns when it comes to how the SARS-CoV-2 virus affects children. There is already a lot of confusion among states, with many Georgia schools moving forward with opening earlier this month on one side and legal battles continuing in Florida regarding the return of kids to school on the other side.
There are also states like Mississippi, where about 4,000 students and 600 teachers were quarantined after COVID-19 exposure. Mississippi state health officer Dr. Thomas E. Dobbs III announced on Tuesday that there were 292 new student cases and 144 new teacher cases in the last week.
“These numbers that we’re seeing in our schools are not unexpected,” Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves said during the news conference. “I am pleased the number of isolations that we’re seeing, the quarantines that we’re seeing. And I’m pleased that there are a large number of Mississippi kids that are sitting in a classroom right now learning in a safe environment and so we got to continue to monitor it, we’ve got to continue to be careful.”
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