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COVID-19 hospitalizations across the country spike; what that means for San Diego

Posted at 4:42 PM, Dec 28, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-28 19:42:45-05

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - A troubling sight in the United States where states like New York, which is seeing a spike in COVID-19 hospitalizations in children. The American Academy of Pediatrics reported a 50% increase in child COVID cases last week.

Just this week nationally, more than 2,100 children were hospitalized from COVID-19, which is 800 more patients than last month.

"People of all ages, adults, and children, the case rates have gone up in the last month," Dr. Mark Sawyer explained.

In New York, cases increased fivefold, 109 pediatric hospitalizations last week. Infectious disease specialist Mark Sawyer with Rady Children's, explains why we might see a similar trend.

"We have certainly seen more kids in the hospital this year as more kids have been infected," states Dr. Sawyer. "Earlier in the pandemic people were keeping their kids at home, and the schools were not open, now they are out and about more and as a result getting infected more."

Dr. Sawyer says that the rise in cases in San Diego could come as early as January. The county's report shows 25.5% of children ages 5 through 11 are vaccinated. It's a number that Dr. Sawyer hopes increases, "That's been the ticket all along to controlling this pandemic," he furthers. "It decreases the chance of you getting sick, it decreases the chance you will spread it to your family members."

The focus now, Dr. Sawyer says is on keeping numbers low. He hopes that after the holiday case surge, we will see a shift in pediatric vaccinations.

"I am anticipating a decrease over the next three months, we are getting young kids up down to age 5 immunized and I encourage parents to do that," expresses Dr. Sawyer. "And in the relatively near future, we are going to be able to immunize even younger children."

Right now 6 states have more than 100 children hospitalized with COVID-19: New York, Texas, Ohio, Georgia, Illinois, and Pennsylvania.