COVID-19 cases continue to climb among children

Published: September 9, 2021 4:59 PM EDT
Updated: September 10, 2021 10:01 AM EDT

The number of COVID-19 cases in children is fourfold what it was in 2020.

While hospitals are seeing an increase in children, pediatricians say they also have a lot of sick kids visiting their offices.

Thirteen COVID-19 patients were at Golisano Children’s Hospital on Wednesday. It used to be there were maybe one or two. Since the start of the pandemic, children account for 14% of all COVID-19 cases in the U.S. But in August, that number jumped to 22.5%

“This virus is not something you want visiting your home. You don’t want visiting your children,” said Tammy Anderson, ICU pediatric nurse at Golisano’s.

Nurses on the front lines say masks would make a difference.

So do pediatricians and pediatric specialists.

“This virus is actually attacking our kids and the thing is yes, thank God, the survival rate of kids is very high, it’s actually higher than adults,” said Dr. Ilan Shapiro, a pediatric specialist. “But that doesn’t change the fact that they can actually have long-term effects and that’s a huge problem for our community.”

Thirteen kids in Florida under the age of 17 have died from the virus, according to statistics from the Florida Department of Health.

“It’s tough, it’s really tough,” said Pediatrician Dr. David Butler. “It doesn’t matter with the diseases anytime a child passes away it’s pretty tragic and to have that many from one disease … It’s pretty scary.”

The doctors agree. The children who are eligible for the vaccine, should get the vaccine and wear a mask. Children who are ineligible should also wear a mask.

“Just come to the hospital and look, just look,” Butler said. “You never know until you walk in someone else’s shoes. Look at those parents, I looked him in the eye and think if that’s your kid.”