‘We are in a public health crisis’: More children being hospitalized due to COVID

Pediatric COVID hospitalization rates increase 311%

DETROIT – Pediatric COVID-19 hospitalization rates increased 311% between Feb. 19 and April 20, 2021 in Michigan.

That’s according to data from the Michigan Health & Hospital Association (MHA). The data shows that the number of children hospitalized with severe COVID-19 symptoms hit a high of 70 this week.

READ: Michigan sees sharp increase in children hospitalized with COVID-19 this year

“Parents have a lot of questions. They’re like, ‘Why is my child affected?’ You know, ‘When did he get the COVID? Why is his body producing all these inflammatory markers,” Dr. Banu Kumar, the Chief of Pediatric Medicine at DMC Children’s Hospital of Michigan, said.

There are 1,500 pediatric COVID cases diagnosed every day.

“Lot of the kids we see are otherwise healthy, you know. They’re perfectly fine and then they are in the ICU and getting all sorts of aggressive medications to try to reverse the process,” Dr. Bishara Freij, Chief of Pediatric Infectious Disease, Beaumont Children’s, said.

In Michigan, the rates of pediatric infections are higher than at any other point during the pandemic. Doctors said there’s a variety of reasons at play, including the highly transmissible U.K. variant, schools reopening and kids under 16 being ineligible for the vaccine.

“We’re seeing more than we did previously. So, it turns out this COVID pneumonia is in adolescence. We have seen many more than we had seen at any point during the pandemic,” Freij said.

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