COVID-19 cases growing among younger population

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There is an increasing number of kids contracting COVID-19 in Florida. The state on Thursday reported the virus claimed its youngest victim in the state: an 11-year-old in Miami-Dade County.

Lee Health, the biggest hospital group in Southwest Florida, said they’ve seen “exponential growth” in pediatric cases in the last two weeks. 

Experts say that while children getting seriously ill from COVID-19 is rare, it can still happen.

“It hit so quick. It was like one minute he was fine and the next minute, it’s like he woke up with this weird, strange fever,” said Sara Garcia, the mother of a sick child.

“They had to do two minutes of CPR on her and then they got her back, thank God,” said Jennifer Daly, whose daughter was hospitalized with the virus.

And on June 23, 17-year-old Cypress Lake High School student Carsyn Davis died from the virus.

“We are seeing a lot more younger patients. I think even this week we had a 12-year-old and we’ve seen a lot of 30 to 40-year-olds, 20-year-olds as far as — and certainly, that’s a change,” said Scott Lowe, Market CEO at Physicians Regional Healthcare System.

Speaking at the Collier County Commission meeting on Tuesday, Lowe said it isn’t just senior citizens showing up for treatments.

Lee Health said their pediatric patient population has exponentially increased over the last two weeks, from babies all the way to teenagers and young adults, with several requiring hospitalization and at least one transferring out to get a higher level of care.

Robert Hawkes, the director of Florida Gulf Coast University’s physician assistant program, said when it comes to the littlest patients, “it’s probably being more family transmission or transmission from other close people they may have come in contact with.”

That’s why Hawkes said we have to start taking care of each other.

“It’s not about them, it’s about the entire community. So while they may not want to wear a mask, they’re protecting others,” he said.

NCH said they’re only treating one minor for COVID-19 right now. Physicians Regional said they’ve seen less than five minors since the start of the outbreak.

If you notice any warning signs, experts say to call your pediatrician – and don’t be afraid to take your child into the hospital for care.


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