There has been a 90% increase in the number of Covid-19 cases among American children over the past four weeks, according to a report released Monday by the American Academy of Pediatrics and the Children’s Hospital Association.
According to this new report, which is expected to be updated weekly, there were 179,990 new cases of Covid-19 among American children between July 9 and August 6. The data comes from case counts provided by state health departments in 49 states, New York, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and Guam.
Part of the increase may be due to more testing, AAP said. At the start of the pandemic, tests were reserved for the sickest. More tests can identify children who have fewer or milder symptoms than those who were tested earlier in the pandemic.
Children make up just over 9% of total cases in states that report cases by age, according to the report. At least 380,174 cases of children of Covid-19 in total have been reported as of August 6.
At this time, it still appears that severe symptoms are rare in children with Covid-19 infections. Children made up between 0.5% and 5.3% of total hospitalizations, according to data from the states that record this information. Children accounted for 0% to 0.4% of all Covid-19-related deaths.
Nineteen states reported no child deaths. In states that have followed the details, 0% to 0.5% of all child cases of Covid-19 have resulted in death.
The PAA called for an effective screening strategy so that communities can make the right choice about opening schools.
“The data – although limited due to its reliance on how each state reports its cases – underscores the urgent need to control the virus in communities so that schools can reopen,” said a press release from the AAP.
“In areas where the community is spreading rapidly, it is likely that more children will be infected as well, and this data shows it,” AAP President Dr Sally Goza said in the press release. “As a pediatrician, I urge people to wear cloth head coverings and be diligent in social distancing and hand washing. It’s up to us to make the difference, community by community.
The World Health Organization said last week that the coronavirus pandemic is starting to affect the world’s younger population, when most cases, by far, have been in people aged 25 to 64.