Number of children getting infected with coronavirus (COVID-19) growing, experts say

Michigan schools debating whether to resume in-person learning this fall

Findings in coronavirus data report examined before start of school year

DETROIT – As Michigan schools debate whether to resume in-person learning this fall or remain entirely online, a new report found the number of children getting infected with the coronavirus (COVID-19) is growing.

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, more than 97,000 children in the United States tested positive for the virus between July 16 and July 30.

The report looks at data compiled from 49 states, Washington, D.C., Puerto Rico and Guam. It was a joint effort from the American Academy of Pediatrics and the Children’s Hospital Association.

As of July 30, there were almost 339,000 cases of the coronavirus reported in American children.

Children make up about 9% of all U.S. cases, experts said.

The report finds there was a 40% increase in the number of pediatric cases in the last weeks of July.

Last week, data published in the journal Pediatrics showed pediatric COVID-19 cases spiked more among American Black and Hispanic children when compared to White Children -- about 30% and 45%, respectively, compared to just 7%.

The findings align with similar inequities in COVID-19 positivity and severity observed among U.S. adults.

While severe illness from COVID-19 is still rare in children, it’s more likely in children of color, the study found.

In the new report, states in the south and west accounted for more than seven of 10 infections. The count could be even higher because the report didn’t include complete data from Texas and parts of New York state outside of New York City.

Missouri, Oklahoma, Alaska, Nevada, Idaho and Montana were among the states with the highest percentage increase of child infections during that period, according to the report.

About the Authors:

You can watch Kimberly Gill weekdays anchoring Local 4 News at 5 p.m., 6 p.m. and 11 p.m. and streaming live at 10 p.m. on Local 4+. She's an award-winning journalist who finally called Detroit home in 2014. Kim has won Regional Emmy Awards, and was part of the team that won the National Edward R. Murrow Award for Best Newscast in 2022.

Derick is the Lead Digital Editor for ClickOnDetroit and has been with Local 4 News since April 2013. Derick specializes in breaking news, crime and local sports.