Till recently, everyone believed that COVID 19 does not make children seriously ill. But the idea is losing its sheen nowadays. Delta is the most contagious strain of the virus the country has ever come across. From 2020 to this year, COVID 19 hospitalized more than 45000 children.
As of Tuesday, the average number of children hospitalized with Coronavirus infection is 192. This shows a 45% increase from the same from the previous week.
The adults in the country are debating about mask mandates among children in schools. They are also questioning the requirement of vaccinating older children. In the meantime, the Delta variant continues to target those unvaccinated. Even children too young to be inoculated fall in this group.
Children Need Protection, Doctors Say
Health professionals believe that the country should protect children. This is not only for their health and in-person learning, but also to stop the emergence of new variants.
During the last academic year, the Alpha variant spread. The nation thought it was the most contagious. This year, a more dangerous Delta variant replaced it.
According to CDC, the Delta variant is as transmissible as chickenpox. In two months, it rose from 3% to over 93% of the tested Coronavirus samples. And in seven days, the country witnessed an 84% increase in the number of new infections among kids. From July 22nd to 29th, the US reported 71,726 pediatric Coronavirus infections. During the previous week, this was 39000.
The unfortunate situation is that hospitalizations are not confined to children with pre-existing conditions. Around 46% of children hospitalized with Coronavirus infection between March 2020 and June 2021 had no underlying health conditions.
Health officials also warn against ignoring deaths among children. In a general scenario, COVID 19 doesn’t make children seriously ill. But deaths among them too have increased considerably. Not more than 416 children have died from Coronavirus until now.
The notion that among the 600,000 deaths, only 416 are children is flawed. Children should not die. Thus 416 is a significant number.
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As per the data CDC released recently, the number of deaths among children due to COVID 19 is more than double the number of deaths from flu in 2019-2020.
The reason why children die due to COVID 19 is that they are vaccinated against all other diseases. No one dies of polio. Diseases like diphtheria are not a cause of death in the US.
Children above 12 are eligible for vaccination. But a large majority of them have not received the shot. A vaccine for those below 12 is yet to arrive. It is sure to take a few months.
Several children being tested with different doses of COVID 19 vaccines. This is being done to ensure their safety and efficacy before they are authorized for use in the country. One among these children is Rebecca Calloway’s daughter who got enrolled for the trials as it was type 1 Diabetes that killed her three-year-old sister and her mother does not want any family to lose its children to Coronavirus infection. Both the diseases; type 1 diabetes and COVID 19 deaths are rare among children. But no one wants to be included in such statistics.
In the backdrop of the highly transmissible Delta variant, CDC now recommends the use of face masks from kindergarten to grade 12, for students, teachers, and visitors. The recommendation applies to everyone above 2 years of age.
Children have the right to learn in-person and full-time in the safest surroundings. That requires masking for every single person in a school.
Several children are going to school after a long time, a single case of infection is enough to destroy all their happiness. The country has to prevent it at any cost.
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