Over 97,000 children tested positive for the Chinese coronavirus in the final two weeks of July, a report from the American Academy of Pediatrics and the Children’s Hospital Association indicated.
The report showed that nearly 100,000 children tested positive for the virus in the last two weeks of July, just as schools nationwide finalize their reopening plans.
The study examined 49 states as well as New York City, Washington, DC, Puerto Rico, and Guam and found that cases grew 40 percent from July 16-30, adding 97,078 new child cases and bringing the cumulative total to 338,982 nationwide. States reporting the most significant increase of child cases in that date range include Missouri, Alaska, Oklahoma, Montana, Idaho, and Nevada.
The July 30 report found that children represented 8.8 percent of all positive coronavirus cases and accounted for 0.6 percent – 3.7 percent of total reported hospitalizations. It also found that less than nine percent of all child coronavirus cases — 0.6 percent -8.9 percent — resulted in hospitalization, based on data from 20 reporting states and New York City.
Notably, the age range for “children” varied state by state. Alabama, for example, reported a “child” age range of 0-24, while Tennessee and North Carolina counted individuals up to the age of 20. Several states — including Texas, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Ohio, Wisconsin, Arizona, and more — reported an age range of 0-19. Wyoming and Pennsylvania opted for a 0-18 age range, while states such as California, Idaho, Iowa, Kansas, Arkansas, Oklahoma, North Carolina, Mississippi, New Jersey, Louisiana, and Delaware reported children up to the age of 17. Florida and Utah used a 0-14 age range for their reporting.
Overall, the report found that children accounted for 0-.8 percent of all coronavirus-related fatalities. Twenty states reported no child coronavirus-related fatalities.
“In states reporting, 0%-0.3% of all child COVID-19 cases resulted in death,” the report found, presenting the overall rate as “447 child COVID-19 cases per 100,000 children in the population.”
Children pose a lower risk of contracting the virus, as reported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), which stated that the “best available evidence indicates that COVID-19 poses relatively low risks to school-aged children.”
“Children appear to be at lower risk for contracting COVID-19 compared to adults,” the CDC continued:
To put this in perspective, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), as of July 17, 2020, the United States reported that children and adolescents under 18 years old account for under 7 percent of COVID-19 cases and less than 0.1 percent of COVID-19-related deaths. Although relatively rare, flu-related deaths in children occur every year. From 2004-2005 to 2018-2019, flu-related deaths in children reported to CDC during regular flu seasons ranged from 37 to 187 deaths. During the H1N1pandemic (April 15, 2009 to October 2, 2010), 358 pediatric deaths were reported to CDC. So far in this pandemic, deaths of children are less than in each of the last five flu seasons, with only 64.† Additionally, some children with certain underlying medical conditions, however, are at increased risk of severe illness from COVID-19.*
The report comes as school districts across the nation finalize their plans to reopen schools — whether physically, virtually, or both — in the era of the Wuhan coronavirus, which appears to be on a decline nationally.