A new report published by the American Academy of Pediatrics and the Children's Hospital Association found a 40% increase in new COVID-19 cases in children during the last two weeks of July. During those two weeks, 97,000 children tested positive for the coronavirus. The actual number could be higher because the report did not include data from Texas or parts of New York outside of New York City.
Overall, more than 338,000 children have tested positive for COVID-19 since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic.
The report found that 70% of the new cases came from cities in the South and West. Missouri, Oklahoma, Alaska, Nevada, Idaho, and Montana saw the largest increases in infections in children.
The researchers noted that the data does not paint a full picture of the pandemic because every state uses a different age to define who constitutes a child. In most states, the end of childhood ranges between 17 and 19, but some states set the cut-off at 14 years old. Meanwhile, in Alabama, anybody under the age of 24 is considered a child.
While the large increase in cases worried the researchers, especially as children prepare to head back to school, they pointed out that most kids who contract the viral infection do not suffer severe symptoms and rarely require hospitalization.
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