The first death of an Idaho child attributed to COVID-19 was reported Tuesday by the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare and Southwest District Health.
The child was a baby who died in October.
“Our hearts go out to this child’s family,” said Elke Shaw-Tulloch, administrator for the Idaho Division of Public Health. “Infection with the virus can have devastating consequences for families, and this situation highlights the seriousness of COVID-19.”
To protect the privacy of the child’s family, no further details were released to the public.
“We were saddened to hear of the loss of one of our newest members of the community. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family at this difficult time,” said Nikole Zogg, director of SWDH.
Childhood deaths attributed to COVID-19 are rare.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website, as of Nov. 9, there were 897 deaths in the 0-17 age group from COVID-19 in the United States. Of these, 282 were in the 0-4 age group, 189 in the 5-11 age group, 219 in the 12-15 age group and 207 in the 16-17 age group.
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, “Since November 4, more than 6.5 million children have tested positive for COVID-19 since the start of the pandemic. More than 107,000 cases were added in children this week, a slight increase from number of cases have fallen since a peak of 252,000 in the week of September 2, but the number of COVID-19 cases among children remains extremely high. For the 13th week in a row, there are more than 100,000 cases of COVID-19 in children. 1.5 million extra children’s cases.”
According to the state website, 262 people under the age of 18 have been hospitalized with COVID-19 in Idaho.
In Idaho, 16 deaths in the age group 18-29 have been attributed to the coronavirus. In Panhandle Health District, two deaths in the age group 18-29 have been attributed to the coronavirus.
Children ages 5 to 11, nearly 30 million nationwide, are now eligible for the Pfizer vaccine since it was recently approved for the age group.
Local providers offering pediatric COVID vaccines include: Walgreens, Lakeside Pediatrics, CDA Pediatrics, Heritage Health (Rathdrum location) and Rite Aid in Coeur d’Alene.
According to healthline.com, vaccine trials in children ages 6 months to 5 years are underway in the United States and under FDA supervision. Data on the impact of vaccines on children 6 months and older is expected to be released by the end of the year or early 2022.