Racial disparities in the U.S. coronavirus epidemic are spreading to children, two sobering government reports published Friday.
One of the reports from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention looked at COVID-19 children who needed hospitalisation. Hispanic children were hospitalized at a rate eight times higher than white children, and five times higher Black children were hospitalized, it found.
The second report examined cases of infants with a rare virus-associated syndrome. It found that nearly three-quarters of children with the syndrome were either Hispanic or Black, well above the general population representation of them.
Racial disparities reached children
Throughout the U.S. healthcare system, the coronavirus has revealed structural injuries, when African, Latino and Native Americans were injured and affected by COVID-19 at much higher rates than other races.
The effect of the virus on children has, meanwhile, become a political issue. President Donald Trump and some other leaders in the administration have been urging schools to reopen, a move that would encourage more parents to return to work and shore up the economy.
On Wednesday, Facebook erased Trump’s post for breaking its prohibition of sharing myths about the coronavirus. The post featured a comparison to a Fox News video where Trump claims the virus is “virtually immune” to the babies.
The vast majority of cases of coronavirus and deaths occurred in adults, and children. They are less likely to experience severe symptoms when they get infection. Of the approximately 5 million cases registered Wednesday in the U.S. About 265,000 were 17 and under in children. About 5%. Of the over 156,000 deaths reported at the time. 77 were children — about 0.05%.
But Friday’s CDC reports are a “good punch” reminder that some kids get seriously ill and die. Carrie Henning-Smith, a researcher at the University of Minnesota who’s focused on health disparities said.
She said studies would include a pause for city members around opening classrooms. “We just have to be, just alert. They also think realistically about putting kids in dangerous conditions, “said Henning-Smith.