COVID-19 cases in kids rising across the country, report says children now represent 11.8% of cases

Posted at 6:29 AM, Dec 01, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-01 06:29:21-05

TAMPA — According to a recent report from the American Academy of Pediatrics, in a 1 week time period in November, there were 144,145 new cases of COVID-19 in children.

Experts say that’s the highest weekly increase since the pandemic began.

Over a two week period in November, there was a 28% increase in new cases of the virus in kids.

According to the report, children now make up for at least 11.8% of confirmed COVID-19 cases in the United States.

In Florida, the state is reporting 89,675 kids have tested positive for the virus so far.

The good news is doctors are saying severe illness due to COVID-19 in kids is still rare.

However, they say there’s an urgent need to collect more data on the long term effects of the virus in children.

Experts say because many children have few or no symptoms, case counts are believed to be widely underreported.

Pediatricians at Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital in St. Petersburg say they’ve noticed a steady increase in cases.

“Just like the rest of the country we’re starting to see an increase in COVID-19 cases,” said Dr. Meghan Martin, ER Physician at Johns Hopkins All Children’s.

“We’re seeing more and more families come in, more and more concerns and more and more children with illness,” said Dr. Ebony Hunter, ER Physician at Johns Hopkins All Children’s.

Doctors say the symptoms they’re seeing are cough, congestion, sore throat, vomiting, and diarrhea.

They say a lot of kids are having body aches and fatigue, too.

The one thing local doctors say they’re noticing is that many parents are trying to be considerate and are holding off bringing their kids to the emergency room, but a lot of families are waiting too long.

“It’s okay to bring your kids in. A lot of people have been coming in and just really apologetic for seeking care. And what we ended up seeing is a lot of people presenting kind of later in their illness. You know appendicitis that has ruptured or they’re just a lot more dehydrated than they would have been if they would’ve come in normally,” said Martin.