Gov. Hochul: State seeing an alarming rise in pediatric COVID-19 hospitalizations
Gov. Kathy Hochul addressed Friday what she calls an alarming rise in the number of pediatric COVID-19 hospitalizations especially in the mid-Hudson region, New York City and Long Island.
The latest report focused on the last week of 2021 leading into Jan. 1 and showed the number of pediatric hospitalizations statewide increased from 70 to 571. The mid-Hudson area and Long Island were calculated together with a combined change from 12 to 112 hospitalizations.
RELATED: Stop the Spread
Hochul was joined Friday by acting state Health Commissioner Dr. Mary Bassett who says of the children newly admitted, about 70% of the cases were asymptomatic.
"Pediatric cases have shown the same pattern of escalation that we've seen with omicron in general," says Bassett. "But this is what is making us concerned. That the rate of increase among children is going up faster than it is among adults. As you can see on this slide - among children that are under 5 and are too little to get vaccinated - no vaccine is approved for this age group - it's gone up nearly eightfold."
The news comes as some districts get set to return to in-person learning. Yonkers and New Rochelle schools will return to the classroom Monday.
The New Rochelle superintendent released a statement saying in part, "We will need to make daily adjustments based on the capacity and attendance of adults supporting our schools. We intend to press on and adjust as necessary. We ask for your understanding and patience as we deal with these challenges."
Hochul and Bassett went on to say that vaccinations and the booster shots that have now been approved by the CDC for children 12 and older are the key to slowing the spread of these new pediatric cases.