‘Our kids are getting sick’: Fauci sounds alarm over rising Covid risk to children

‘These kids are getting sick. We’ve really got to make sure we protect them,’ says chief medical adviser

Gino Spocchia
Monday 09 August 2021 15:20
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<p>Dr Anthony Fauci on NBC’s ‘Meet the Press’ on Sunday</p>

Dr Anthony Fauci on NBC’s ‘Meet the Press’ on Sunday

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Dr Anthony Fauci has sounded the alarm over Covid and children amid a surge in hospitalisations, and warned that “kids are getting sick” from the Delta variant of the virus.

Speaking in an interview with NBC’s“Meet the Press” on Sunday, Dr Fauci said anyone who thought children were immune to being hospitalised with Covid were wrong, and needed to “get the facts”.

An average of 216 children were hospitalised last week across the US, according to data from the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

In Florida, where more children were in hospital with Covid than any other US state last week, the figure for admissions on Friday was 157. Among all ages, 13,400 are in hospital with Covid in Florida, according to analysis by the Miami Herald.

Dr Fauci, asked about the figures from Florida, said the threat to children from Covid was “something that we’ve been saying all along, where others have said, ‘No, no problem with children.’ There is a problem with children.”

“All you need to do is do a survey of the paediatric hospitals throughout the country, and you’re seeing a considerable number of young people who are not only infected but who are seriously ill,” said the chief medical adviser. “Again, the numbers compared to the elderly are less, but that’s a false comparison.”

Louisiana and Kansas, as well as Texas and Tennessee, have also seen rising cases of Covid among children, with a three-month-old baby among those admitted into hospital in New Orleans last week, according to The New York Times.

While it remains unclear if children are more at risk of falling ill from Delta than the original Covid, the age group is among the least vaccinated against Covid.

In Florida, as few as 38 per cent of those aged 12 to 19 have had a single dose, and in Texas — where the children’s hospital in Houston was almost full on Friday — the same figure was at 40 per cent, according to The Times.

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