COVID Second Wave: Nearly 70K Adolescents & Kids Infected In Odisha, 26 Dead

Bhubaneswar: Amid the lingering fear of a third wave and its possible impact on children, Odisha has seen 732 in the age group of 0-18 years getting infected by COVID since August 15 when the Health Department began mapping the paediatric population.

While 69,340 children have been found infected so far in the second wave, 27,787 had tested positive for the virus last year, the department sources said.

The infection rate in this age group is varying between 12 per cent and 15 per cent. Though there is no concrete study, it is being predicted that children and adolescents may have to bear the brunt during the third wave of the pandemic.

Director of Public Health Dr Niranjan Mishra had told the media that the state may see a surge in infection among children as they have not been vaccinated and there is every possibility of them contracting the virus from adult family members.

“We have started paediatric surveillance to keep track of the infection and initiate a targeted approach. All symptomatic children coming to hospitals are undergoing RT-PCR tests. We will be able to analyse the trend after a month,” he added.

The second wave also saw 26 children – 14 boys and 12 girls, succumbing to the virus. The deaths of a 13-year-old boy, a month-old baby girl and a nine-year-old boy due to the deadly disease were confirmed on Friday, Thursday and Tuesday respectively.

The highest of 13 were in the age group of seven to 14 years, followed by 8 in the 15-14 age group and five in the 0-6 age group.

The virus had claimed 13 lives (10 boys and 3 girls) during the first wave.

Dr Md Khalil Khan, Head PICU- Ankura Hospital for Women & Children Hyderabad, told Odisha bytes that fever and cough are the most common symptoms among the children.

“There has been a rise in hospitalisation among children, almost double of that during the first wave,” he said.

Khan, however, added that COVID causes no or only mild symptoms among most children and those with mild or moderate COVID will not progress to more severe illness. Most children recover in one to two weeks.

“Shock and ARDS ( Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome) are the most severe of the complications. This occurs mostly in children with underlying medical conditions,” he said.




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