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The delta variant is putting children at serious risk for severe COVID-19, experts say

The delta variant has had a real impact on children

A woman wearing face masks to protect against the delta variant.
A woman wearing a face mask to protect against coronavirus walks with her children along the beach in Saint Jean de Luz, southwestern France, Tuesday, July 27, 2021. Experts continue to warn that the delta variant is spreading to children, infecting them with the coronavirus and leading to some severe COVID-19 situations.
Bob Edme, Associated Press

Experts continue to warn that the delta variant is spreading to children, infecting them with the coronavirus and leading to some severe COVID-19 situations.

Do kids still get COVID-19?

Dr. Yvonne Maldonado, a committee chairwoman with the American Academy of Pediatrics, recently told CNN that COVID-19 cases continue to climb among children.

  • She said there have been more than 72,000 COVID-19 cases in children and teens in the last week.

Do children get severe COVID-19?

Severe COVID-19 cases remain rare among children, but they do happen, Maldonado said.

Dr. Francis Collins, the director of the National Institutes of Health, told CNN that it’s no question that COVID-19 is hurting children.

  • “It’s clear that this variant is capable of causing serious injury in children. You heard those stories coming out of Louisiana pediatric ICUs where there are kids as young as a few months old that are sick,” Collins said.

Is the delta variant worse for children?

Experts are warning, too, that the delta variant has been worse for children than any other mutation, as I explained for the Deseret News.

Dr. Rick Barr, a leader at Arkansas Children’s Hospital, told NPR that the delta variant has been hurting children more than any other variant.

  • “Delta variant is acting very, very differently with respect to kids ... just in the month of July, we have (admitted) over 40 to the children’s hospital ... and a number of those have ended up in the intensive care unit,” he told NPR.

Dr. Katherine Williamson, a pediatrician in Orange County, told The Los Angeles Times that parents should be doing whatever they can to keep children safe from COVID-19 “when they have an unvaccinated child in their family.”