COVID cases rise, hospitalizations double for Minnesota kids compared to last fall
A rise in pediatric COVID-19 cases nationwide has many parents worried about the well-being of their students -- as many returned to the classroom this week.
MANKATO, Minn. (KEYC) - The number of kids with COVID-19 in the state and country is climbing.
252,000 pediatric cases were reported in the U.S. this week, making up 26% of all cases nationwide.
This week, many southern Minnesota students went back to the classroom full-time for the first time in over a year. Mitigation efforts like social distancing and mask wearing vary dramatically based on school and age group.
In addition to an increase in child COVID cases, Minnesota is reporting an increase in youth COVID patients who are in the hospital, compared to this time last fall.
The number of child cases that result in hospitalization has increased from 0.7% to 1.3% year over year. It’s an increase M-D-H attributes to the highly infectious delta variant, as well as students spending more time around each other at school.
”The good news is that is still a relatively small number of cases in children who are being hospitalized,” MDH director of infectious disease prevention Kris Ehresmann said. “But the concern is that that is doubled from what we saw the fall before. So as we think about more kids back in school, our elementary schools unable to be vaccinated, those are the things that are giving us pause. So that’s why we’re looking at the data so carefully and that’s why the two commissioners have emphasized the importance of layered mitigation.”
When asked if the department of health is considering taking action toward a statewide mask mandate in schools, MDH commissioner Jan Malcolm said that will require some involvement from the state legislature. She said they are monitoring data daily so they can be ready to take action if needed.
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