CDC: Children Can Develop Severe Cases of the Coronavirus

Children are at risk of developing severe cases of COVID-19, the Centers for Disease Prevention and Control warned in a report on Friday. News

The report looked at nearly 580 kids who were hospitalized with the coronavirus between the start of March and late July. Researchers found that hospitalization rates for children increased steadily over that timeline.

About 1 in 3 hospitalized children needed to be admitted to an intensive care unit, according to the report – a rate similar to the ICU admittance rate for hospitalized adults with the coronavirus.

Cartoons on the Coronavirus

Still, the hospitalization rate for children with COVID-19 is far lower than for adults. For kids under the age of 18, the report found the hospitalization rate was 8 in 100,000 and highest for children under the age of 2. The rate is considerably higher for adults at about 165 in 100,000.

Overall, Hispanic, Latino and Black children were hospitalized with the virus more frequently than white children – a trend that has also been documented in adults.

The report urged public health officials to track pediatric cases of the virus and said that enforcing mitigation measures in places that see gatherings of kids is necessary.

“Reinforcement of prevention efforts is essential in congregate settings that serve children, including childcare centers and schools,” the report said.

The CDC report comes as a stark contrast to President Donald Trump’s messaging when it comes to children and the coronavirus.

In a push to get schools to reopen, Trump has claimed that “young people do extraordinarily well” with the virus.

Facebook and Twitter this week took down a post shared by Trump for breaking their rules against spreading coronavirus misinformation. In a Fox News interview, the president said that kids are “almost immune from this disease.”

The CDC released a second report on Friday that detailed a rare but severe condition some kids get about two to four weeks after the onset of the coronavirus.

The condition, called multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children or MIS-C, has a long list of symptoms that include fever, rash, gastrointestinal problems, shock and inflammation. The symptoms are similar to toxic shock syndrome or Kawasaki disease, a rare inflammatory illness that typically affects children under the age of 5.

As of late July, 570 possible cases of MIS-C had been reported to the CDC. More than 60% of patients were admitted to intensive care, and 10 patients died. All of the patients who were tested for the virus came back positive or possessed antibodies.

The report advised health care providers to continue looking for signs of the illness and report it to local and state health departments.

“Distinguishing patients with MIS-C from those with acute COVID-19 and other hyperinflammatory conditions is critical for early diagnosis and appropriate management,” the report said. “It is also critical for monitoring potential adverse events of a COVID-19 vaccine when one becomes widely available.”

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As of late July, 570 possible cases of MIS-C had been reported to the CDC. More than 60% of patients were admitted to intensive care, and 10 patients died. All of the patients who were tested for the virus came back positive or possessed antibodies.

The report advised health care providers to continue looking for signs of the illness and report it to local and state health departments.

“Distinguishing patients with MIS-C from those with acute COVID-19 and other hyperinflammatory conditions is critical for early diagnosis and appropriate management,” the report said. “It is also critical for monitoring potential adverse events of a COVID-19 vaccine when one becomes widely available.”