The Facts About COVID-19 and Children

The Facts About COVID-19 and Children

Read the latest data on kids' COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations and vaccination numbers.
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  • There have been over 122,222 pediatric hospital admissions (ages 0-17) with COVID-19 since August 2020.
    • 931 new hospital admissions of children were reported during the week beginning April 26.
    • CDC data suggests that the percent change in new pediatric hospital admissions from the previous week is +10.7%.
    • A recent report stated that during the peak period of Omicron (Dec. 19, 2021–Feb. 19, 2022), weekly COVID-19–associated hospitalization rates per 100,000 infants and children ages 0–4 years peaked at 14.5%. This Omicron peak was approximately five times more compared to the Delta variant peak (June 27–Dec. 18, 2021).
  • As of April 27, 9.8 million children ages 5-11 and 17.1 million children ages 12-17 have received at least one vaccination dose, while 8 million children ages 5-11 and 14.6 million children ages 12-17 are fully vaccinated. View the chart here.  
    • A study conducted July–October of 2021 stated over 95% of vaccine-eligible children hospitalized with COVID-19 had not been fully vaccinated. Similarly, 99% of COVID-19 patients receiving life support while in the hospital had not been fully vaccinated.
    • For the week ending April 30, the BA.2 Omicron variant was estimated to be over 61% of COVID-19 cases. It took less than nine weeks for BA.2 to become the dominate Omicron variant in the U.S. Additionally, the Omicron subvariant BA.2.12.1 is currently 36% of COVID-19 cases and has been increasing approximately 10 percentage points over the last two weeks. Early reports suggest that while these variants are more contagious, they do not appear to be more severe. 

Do we know why there are changes in the number of kids with COVID-19 admitted into the hospital?

Our data suggests that the risk of hospitalization for children with COVID-19 has remained relatively constant during the pandemic, and the number of new pediatric COVID-19 hospitalizations closely mirrors the number of new pediatric infections. According to the CDC, there had been an increase in child emergency department visits and hospitalizations in states with the lowest vaccination coverage.

Are kids in the hospital now sicker than before?

Based on current data, we can’t answer this question. It is clear that the new variants are more contagious, and more kids are contracting COVID-19. However, it is not clear if the variants are more severe for kids.

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