Nurses collect samples from a patient in a COVID suspect room in the COVID-19 intensive care unit at St. Paul’s hospital in downtown Vancouver, Tuesday, April 21, 2020. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward)

Nurses collect samples from a patient in a COVID suspect room in the COVID-19 intensive care unit at St. Paul’s hospital in downtown Vancouver, Tuesday, April 21, 2020. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward)

5 British Columbians under 20 years old battled COVID-19 in ICU in recent weeks

Overall hospitalizations have fallen but young people battling the virus in hospital has increased

B.C.’s demographic makeup of those contracting COVID-19 is changing – infecting younger people than at the height of the pandemic – as the second wave drags on across the country.

That’s according to the latest B.C. Centre for Disease Control COVID-19 situation report, released weekly, which shows a breakdown of various aspects of how the infection is taking hold in the province.

The report shows that while overall hospitalizations have fallen in the past few weeks, young people battling the virus in hospital has increased.

In the week of Jan. 3 to 9, two children from birth to age 10 were admitted into the intensive care unit due to COVID-19. Three youth between 10 and 19 years of age were also admitted into the ICU. In the same time period, 36 children under the age of 10 were hospitalized, as well as 31 more who are between 10 and 19 years old.

Meanwhile, adults aged 20 to 39 makeup a disproportionate percentage of COVID-19 cases – 41 per cent of all cases but 28 per cent of the population, the report shows. Of those infected with the respiratory disease, 285 landed in hospital, a further 62 in ICU.

The increase in cases among young people has had an impact on the median age for reported cases, dropping from 56 years old in the first wave to 37 years old as of Jan. 9.

Median age of hospitalizations and deaths have stayed relatively stable, at 66 years old and 86 years old, respectively.

No deaths of anyone under the age of 30 have been reported in B.C. since the coronavirus touched down in the province almost a year ago. Four people aged 30 to 39 have died, while 90 per cent of all deaths are of those aged 70 and older – many connected to long-term care homes.

Roughly 65 per cent of total deaths have happened in November and December.


@ashwadhwani
ashley.wadhwani@bpdigital.ca

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